Landless Theatre opens season with original 'Sweeney Todd [Prog Metal Version]'

Mar. 13—While Broadway is focused on a Josh Groban helmed remount of Sondheim's musical thriller masterpiece "Sweeney Todd," a rarely seen rock adaptation will emerge this month in Frederick. The Landless Theatre Company will open its 2023 season with its original "Sweeney Todd [Prog Metal Version]" at New Spire Arts on March 17 to 19, directed by Melissa Baughman with music direction by Charles W. Johnson.

In the infamous tale, Sweeney Todd, an unjustly exiled barber, returns to 19th-century London to seek vengeance against the lecherous judge who framed him and ravaged his young wife.

In 2014, the late Stephen Sondheim gave Landless Theatre Company exclusive permission to arrange the first and only metal orchestration of "Sweeney Todd," telling the New York Times via email, "I did indeed give them my O.K. ... since I believe that what keeps theater alive is its openness to reinterpretation from generation to generation."

Landless is thrilled to remount a long-anticipated East Coast concert tour of "Sweeney Todd [Prog Metal Version]," opening with this performance at Frederick's New Spire Stages. The company is also recording an original cast album.

Subsequent productions in Landless Theatre's 2023 season include "Footloose: The Musical" in May (a co-production with Frederick's 24/7 Dance Studio), "Twelve Angry Jurors" in July and the original "Great Gatsby Musical" in November.

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