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In 1981 George Furth and Stephen Sondheim collaborated to refresh a classic 1934 play “Merrily We Roll Along” by George S. Kaufman and Moss Hart. The ’80s reboot has themes of “friendship, compromise and the high price of success,” according to its press release, and will be playing at Ferndale’s Ringwald Theatre now through March 19.
“Merrily We Roll Along” begins with Franklin Shepard. At the start of the play, he is a wealthy film producer, but audiences get to track the 20 years it took him to get to his high-standing position. Over the course of that time, viewers see Shepard’s varied personal and professional decisions — some harder than others.
The “high energy” of the musical is made “poignant and emotional” in the
“contemporary story about the importance of staying true to one’s ideals,” its press release said.
The “Broadway-style” score has been lauded for its “outstanding lyrics” and, when it was released, it received a Lawrence Olivier Award for Best New Musical.
The cast of this production includes Ashlee Armstrong, Jordan Gagnon, Jerry Haines, Kyle Mitchell Johnson, Kevin Kaminski, Ashley M. Lyle, Anna Morreale, Nicole Pascaretta, Brandy Joe Plambeck, Donny Riedel, Liz Schultz. and Matthew Wallace. Music direction is done by CT Hollis and accompaniment by Ben Villaluz.
The show is presented on Fridays, Saturdays and Mondays at 8 p.m., and its two Sunday performances are at 5 p.m. Tickets start at $10, but a full pricing list can be found online at theringwald.com.