NDNU Offers a Little “Company” in Sondheim Musical Comedy

Belmont, CA, September 24, 2009 — Phone rings, door chimes, in comes Sondheim when Notre Dame de Namur University presents Company, which runs October 1-11 at the Taube Conference Center.

Company examines the aspects of long-term relationships and married life through a series of vignettes tied together by bachelor Robert’s 35th birthday. Through Robert’s eyes, audiences observe his married friends and all their nagging, passive acceptance, neuroticism, shallowness, and dysfunction, as well as his various escapades with women, and his failure to commit to any of them. All of these experiences culminate in Robert’s realization that he needs not only someone to take care of him, but also someone for him to take care of while “Being Alive”.

Company is a wonderful challenge because of the complexity of its characters, many who are feeling one thing and presenting something entirely different,” said director Greg Fritsch. “I am continually impressed by what these students bring to the table. I have witnessed wonderful things happen in their work, and they continue to raise the bar.”

Produced for the first time on Broadway in 1970 at the Alvin Theatre, Company won six Tony awards, including Best Musical, Best Book of a Musical, and Best Original Score, and received another Tony in 2006 for Best Revival of a Musical. It was developed from 11 one-act plays written by George Furth, who later wrote the book for the musical. The musical contains a number of Sondheim gems, including “The Ladies Who Lunch”, “Getting Married Today”, and “Being Alive”.

Company is presented in an intimate setting with direction by Greg Fritsch, and is produced by special arrangement with Music Theatre International. The remainder of the production staff is comprised of music director William Liberatore, choreographer Donna Cerio, lighting designer Matthew Royce, and costumer Kate Irving Mills. Students Claire Karoly and Lindsay Saier serve as stage manager and assistant director, respectively.

The cast features Nicholas Patton as Robert, Bailey Batti as Joanne, Jorey Cantu as Susan, Alexis Flores as Susan, Alina Fontanilla as Sherry, Kelly Jean Hammond as April, Shannon Kilpatrick as Amy, Cassandra Miguel as Marta, Daniel G. Norberg as Larry, Carlo Olmos as David, Neal Pascua as Peter, and Sarah Espinoza Smither as Jenny. Alumnus Martin Rojas-Dietrich appears as Paul courtesy of the Actors Equity Association.

Performances are October 1, 2, 3, 8, 9, and 10 at 7:30 p.m., October 4 at 7 p.m. and October 11 at 2 p.m.. Tickets cost $20 general admission and $10 for students and seniors. The Taube Conference Center is located on the NDNU campus, 1500 Ralston Avenue in Belmont.