TACOMA, Wash. – What really happens when a wish comes true? Into the Woods, the musical that has been capturing audiences and landing awards since its Broadway premiere 31 years ago, has a theory about that. Big hint: Be careful what you wish for.
Dare to come along and discover the fate of characters from fairy tales including Jack and the Beanstalk, Rapunzel, and Cinderella, by attending University of Puget Sound’s opera theater production of the popular musical.
Into the Woods will be performed by School of Music students at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, April 6, and Saturday, April 7, in Schneebeck Concert Hall. There will be a matinee performance at 2 p.m. on Sunday, April 8. Ticket information and a map of campus are below.
“Into the Woods is an amazingly entertaining, heartfelt, and whimsical journey through the world of fairy tales,” says Dawn Padula, director of vocal studies, who produced and directs the performance. “Stephen Sondheim’s brilliant musical score and James Lapine’s clever book are unparalleled—there is no doubt why this show has been popular for three decades.”
The production features a strong and talented cast of student vocalists. Into the Woods is considered a “crossover” musical, in terms of its musical complexity and types of voices, Padula says, so it is not uncommon for opera companies to stage performances.
“Our production will be primarily acoustic, with minimal amplification, so we have pared down the instrumentation to allow the voices to be heard more clearly,” Padula adds. Jeff Caldwell, musical director, will lead an ensemble of student musicians. Costumes are by Mishka Navarre and lighting design by Mark Thomason. Set pieces were built by Randy Cabe of Champion Builders.
The Tony Award-winning play interweaves several Brothers Grimm and Charles Perrault folk tales, leading the audience down a path that twists from delight to dismay, as characters such as Little Red Riding Hood, Jack, and Cinderella pursue their wishes—only to find that not every fairy tale is guaranteed a happy ending.
The plot is tied together by The Baker and his wife, who set off into the woods hoping to reverse The Witch’s curse that prevents them from having children. The audience also meets Cinderella, who dreams of going to the King’s Festival, and Jack, who wishes his cow would give some milk. For a time it seems everyone’s wish will come true—but things darken with a visit from The Giant. Eyes are opened as the characters encounter the realities of life and seek to find a way out.
Into the Woods has had numerous stage productions, across the United States and overseas, and in 2014 was released as a Disney film starring Meryl Streep, Emily Blunt, and Johnny Depp.
FOR TICKETS: Tickets are available online at tickets.pugetsound.edu, or at Wheelock Information Center, 253.879.3100. Admission is $15 for the general public; $10 for seniors (55+), students, military, and Puget Sound faculty and staff; and $7 for Puget Sound students.
Press photos of the dress rehearsal will be available shortly before the event.
Photos on page: From top right: Poster for Puget Sound's Into the Woods; print, Rapunzel, Let Down Your Hair, by Anne Anderson. And the witch climbed up... (public domain)
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