The Demon Barber of Fleet Street: A Delightfully Grisly, Vaudevillian Version of Sweeney Todd
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The last date listed for The Demon Barber of Fleet Street: The Melodrama of Sweeney Todd was Thursday August 25, 2011 / 8:00pm.
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Join the University of Minnesota Showboat Players on board the Minnesota Centennial Showboat for a chilling tale of revenge, murder and tasty meat pies! The Demon Barber of Fleet Street infamously tells the tale of a barber who seeks revenge for the crimes committed against him by polishing off those who wronged him as they sit in his barber’s chair. Peter Moore and Vern Sutton, the all-star duo that brought you 2008’s Showboat smash hit The Count of Monte Cristo, join forces once again to bring this tale to life with turn of the century staging and fun-filled, Vaudeville-style musical interludes. It’s bound to be bloody good time!
Sweeney Todd is no stranger to the pop culture scene. Popularized by Steven Sondheim’s 1979 Broadway hit, Sweeney Todd and, most recently, by Tim Burton’s film adaptation starring Johnny Depp, the legend of the demon barber has captivated audiences for generations. Moore and Sutton take this notoriously gruesome tale and turn it into a thrill that the whole family can enjoy. Moore says, “We’re using all the drama and suspense that everyone associates with Sweeney Todd, but we’re using the Showboat’s signature Vaudeville style to make it fun. And it is! It’s just so much fun!”
Sutton returns to the Showboat as its director of olios* – a job he has been doing for decades. A Minnesota opera legend, Sutton trained on the Showboat’s sister venue The Stagecoach with entertainment legend, Robert Moulton. And Sutton is determined to pass on the tradition of entertainment to the next generation. “I wouldn’t have had the success I had, without the training I got doing olios on the Stagecoach,” says Sutton. “Singing and dancing – that’s just the basics. I’m going to help these students learn a style that they can apply anywhere.”
*Olios are an intrinsic part of the Vaudeville era of American stage performance. Derived from the Italian word for “oil,” they were traditionally musical interludes that took place in front of the oilcloth curtain to serve as fillers while the stage was being readied for the next act. In keeping with the style of the time, the Showboat still uses these song and dance numbers – much to the delight of its audiences!