Lights of Broadway: Into the Woods (2022)




INTO THE WOODS

Synopsis: Little Red has strayed far from the path, Jack’s found a second beanstalk, Prince Charming’s eyes are wandering, and there’s a Witch living next door. Stephen Sondheim’s most popular musical turns the world of fairy tales topsy-turvy, reminding us that granted wishes often bring complications. Filled with exquisite music and brilliant lyrics, this innovative new production is sure to enchant as it ventures beyond “happily ever after.”


Review:

Stephen Sondheim’s Into the Woods is an instant Broadway classic, an epic fairy tale twisted dark that would make the Grimm Brothers pleased with the adaptation. The story of Into the Woods features the Baker (portrayed by Neil Patrick Harris) and his wife (portrayed by Sara Barellis) entering the woods at the witch’s request (portrayed by Heather Headly) in order to remove the curse preventing them from having a child by acquiring a cow as white as milk, a cape as red as blood, hair as yellow as corn, and a slipper as pure as gold. Along the way they encounter various other fairytale characters with these items to acquire; Jack (portrayed by Cole Thompson), Little Red Riding Hood (portrayed by Julia Lester), and Cinderella (portrayed by Denée Benton) to round out the leading characters in the show.


Encores! took this Stephen Sondheim classic and portrayed it in concert style with minimalist scenic design by David Rockwell, this production shows us that Into the Woods thrives when it is stripped back and let’s the complicated story and music be the star of the show. Featuring simplistic trees and flat facing little houses, the set allows the story to be enhanced. Despite being dubbed as a concert style production, this felt very much like it was ready for Broadway with little to no tweaks. The direction from the team Lear deBessonet (Director), Lorin Latarro (Choreographer), and Rob Berman (Music Director) really showcased the staff in the most positive light. This casting was perfect and every single person made this 3 hour performance not feel long enough.