The night smiles - and this performance does too!
This was a wonderful realisation of a gem. I first saw it in London with Jean Simmons and Hermoine Gingold and was suitably impressed. This version was a PBS telecast of a performance at The Lincoln Center (November 7, 1990.) For some reason it has never been commercially available, but inevitably copies have found their way around. Sally Ann Howes is just perfectly cast as Desiree and as her mother, Mme. Arnfeldt, the great mezzo Regina Resnick makes an equally indelible impression. The rest of the cast do not disappoint, and the production (a NYCO job) is great. All in all, Ingmar Bergman's tale is brought vividly to life and Stephen Sondheim's genius shines brightly, as it should. A complete opposite from the altogether miserable effort filmed a few years earlier. With Len Cariou, Hermione Gingold (both recreating their stage roles) and Elizabeth Taylor leading the cast there, one might have expected a great deal more but don't bother. Cariou and Diana Rigg are very good, but Miss Taylor is just not right. Try to get a copy of this one. Google it, borrow it, mortgage your house for it but get it!
- Apr 3, 2008
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