Sweeney Todd – The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

Music & Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim Book by Hugh Wheeler

From an adaptation by
Christopher Bond

Previews in the Open-Air at Oxted School.
Saturday 28th July & Sunday 29th July 2018

Minack Theatre on the cliffs at Porthcurno.
Monday 6th to Friday 10th August 2018

Described as a ‘musical thriller’, Sweeney Todd is a multi-award winning musical with a story of obsession and revenge set in Victorian London.

It is a dark and unsettling tale of a barber who returns home to London after fifteen years of exile to take revenge on the corrupt judge who ruined his life. When revenge eludes him, Sweeney swears vengeance on the entire human race, infamously dispatching as many people as he can, whilst conspiring with Mrs Lovett, who is in desperate need of fresh meat for her pies.

Perhaps Stephen Sondheim’s most perfect score, Sweeney Todd is lush, operatic, and full of soaring beauty, pitch-black comedy and stunning terror.

Sweeney Todd was produced by Richard Allen and Paul Robinson. Paul Longhurst once again joined us as Director, and our Musical Director was Steven Geraghty. Fiona Steel was our Assistant Director, and was also responsible for all the musical staging.

As with all previous Minack tours, the technical team was headed up by Bruce Reed (Technical Director) and our Stage Manager, Malcolm Le Croissette. Our largest and most complex Minack set ever was designed by Tara Usher.

This was the first time that Sweeney Todd had been presented at the Minack Theatre. There were 50 members of cast and the whole touring company totalled around 125 people.




Production Team
Production Team

Producer:  Richard Allen

Associate Producer:  Paul Robinson

Director:  Paul Longhurst

Musical Director:  Steven Geraghty

Assistant Director:  Fiona Steel

Technical Director:  Bruce Reed

Stage Manager:  Malcolm Le Croissette

Assistant Stage Manager:  Phil Littleford

Set Designer:  Tara Usher

Production Design Consultant:  Jill "Wigs" Wilson

Principals Costume Designer:  Penelope Konstantara

Wardrobe Mistress:  Janet Beatty

Costume Supplier:  Elizabeth Callow

Lighting Designer:  Carolyn Rowley

Lighting Projects:  Andrew Bruce & Alistair Bruce

Sound Technician:  James McLeod

Props Supervisor:  Muriel Lister

Pirelli's Caravan Design:  Martin Beatty

Hair & Makeup:  Neila Dawes

Photography & Videography:  Gordon Drayson


Sweeney Todd:   Shane Perry

Mrs Lovett:  Sarah Trotman

Anthony Hope:  William Huke

Johanna:  Rachel Kitchen

Judge Turpin:  Nick Heritage

Tobias Ragg:  Kaidyn Hinds

The Beadle:  Paul Robinson

Beggar Woman:  Sophie Grace

Aldolfo Pirelli:  David Phipps-Davis

Jonas Fogg:  Seb Junemann

Bird Seller:  Jon Ford


Ensemble:  Richard Allen - Faith Anderson - Sam Blackman-Gibson - Sarah Coldwell - Lars Evans - Stephen Fanis - Ripley Fanson - Charlotte Faulkes - Jon Ford - Izzy Golding - Abigail Harper - Eddie Hinds - Karen Holmes - Stephanie Hornett Johnson - Poppy Humphrey - Paul Hyde - Seb Junemann - Shannen Knutsen - Jane Kortlandt - Harry Ladd-Carr - Nicki Lewis - Adrian Martin - Debbie Martin - Julia Nash - Taya Possumato - Jo Phyphers - Alison Redford - Michael Saunders - Kathy Stokes - Gareth Thomas - Lilah Unwin - Jackie Violet - Mark Wakeford - Ali Westcott - CC Wiliamson - Lewis Wilmott - Christine Woodhead - Louise Wright - Ros Wright - Lara Young


Conductor:  Steven Geraghty


Violin 1:  Luke Waterfield

Violin 2:  Rebecca Ryan

Viola:  Jonathan Acton

Cello:  Simon Williamson

Double Bass:  Daniele Borgato

Trumpet 1:  Graham Wright

Trumpet 2:  Pete Cooper

Trombone 1:  Simon Jones

Trombone 2:  Richard Pywell

Horn:  Raoul Neumann

Reed 1:  Jin Theriault

Reed 2:  Ben Marshall

Reed 3:  Fran Reich

Reed 4:  Paul Sanders

Reed 5:  Neil Pardoe

Keyboard 1:  Liam Connery

Keyboard 2:  James Hall

Percussion:  Dave Longman


By Jenni Balow:

Take my advice and eat your picnic before this dark and thrilling musical begins, because you certainly won’t have an appetite for your steak pasty, or anything meaty when you witness the grizzly contents of this award winning masterpiece by Stephen Sondheim and the Surrey-based Barnstormers.
This is a grim Victorian tale of the bloody revenge taken by the finest barber in the City of London, who returns 15 long years after being deported on a convict ship to Botany Bay by a Judge who takes a fancy to his beautiful wife, Lucy, and wants him well out of the way.
Todd is a brooding broken man, but pie-maker extraordinaire Nellie Lovett takes him under her wing, so to speak, and he is also rescued and then befriended on the ship home by Anthony, a young sailor, who will soon meet the barber’s beloved daughter, Johanna.
Producer Richard Allen has assembled nearly 120 actors, musicians, designers and technicians for this epic show that throbs to Sondheim’s insistent and repetitive counterpoint score, which he describes as “ranging in style from soaring beauty to pitch-black comedy and stunning terror” and I certainly go along with that.
Scaffolding has been used by production and set designer Tara Usher to erect complex and dramatic staging that includes a barber’s shop with a chute for the rapid disposal of certain clients into the cellar, and with a giant glowing oven for Mrs Lovett’s lovely pies.
And it is Sarah Trotman playing Mrs Lovett, who gives a star performance in partnership with Shane Perry as Todd. It is a wonderful role and she gives it everything she has, which is a fine feisty voice, and a wicked sense of dark humour.
They are great together and incomparable as they plot the contents of the pies – “a politician’s so oily, he’s served with a doily” – and when she dreams of something better By The Sea.
William Huke and Rachel Kitchen are utterly delightful as Anthony and Johanna, and in a different way, so are David Phipps-Davis as Pirelli and Kaidyn Hinds as Tobias, with Nick Heritage monstrous as the Judge and Paul Robinson as his nasty accomplice, who innocently asks the barber “do you pomade the hair?” and sings and plays an improbably sweet ditty on the harmonium.
Steven Geraghty makes a very sound debut at the Minack as musical director, with an orchestra that delivers scarily and screechingly as demanded.
The director Paul Longhurst, assisted by Fiona Steel, and technical director Bruce Reed, make a great team with costume designer Penelope Konstantara and Caro Rowley, with spot-on cue lighting.
Do you fancy a shave Sir, or a pie, perhaps?


Did you like this? Share it!