Speaking of Sondheim …

I hope you’ve taken the time to tune in to Sounds of Broadway, the online radio station that presents show tunes around the clock. Every month I join host Stuart Brown for our podcast, “The Complete Stephen Sondheim.” Our most recent conversation was about Pacific Overtures. I hope you’ll give it a listen.

I’m deeply indebted to musical theater expert Bill Rudman for producing a four, hour-long programs for SiriusXM in 2021 during which we talked about Sondheim and listened to 41 songs from his many shows. If you missed those programs last April/May or late in 2021 after Sondheim passed away, you’ll find them now uploaded part of Footlight Parade: Sounds of the American Musical on the Public Radio Exchange. Here are links to each program: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, and Part 4.

Back in February, writer D.T. Max authored an in-depth essay for The New Yorker, “Stephen Sondheim’s Lesson for Every Artist,” based on several conversations they had over the last five years of Sondheim’s life. They discussed ideas for shows Sondheim had abandoned, details of his writing process, and the musical he was working on based on films by Luis Buñuel. It’s well worth reading.

If you’re in Chicago this spring, you should circle Monday, May 23, 7pm for Chicago Sings Stephen Sondheim presented by Porchlight Music Theatre at  the Museum of Contemporary Art (220 E. Chicago Ave.) It’s the live return of the popular “Chicago Sings” fundraising concert performed by an array of performers representing the who’s-who of the Windy City’s music theater and cabaret favorites. Tickets and more information.

The TV game show Jeopardy recently featured “Remembering Stephen Sondheim” as a category for contestants to respond with questions. Here’s a link if you want to play along, although I suspect you will know most of the answers. But if you need to look something up, please be reminded that THE STEPHEN SONDHEIM ENCYCLOPEDIA is a great resource. Through the end of April, you can use the coupon code on my website, www.RickPenderWrites.com, for a 30% discount. If you already have your copy, perhaps you’ll share this link with a friend who’s a Sondheim fan.

Have a question about Sondheim? Send it my way!

– Rick Pender

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