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A Little Night Music is a stage musical with music and lyrics by Broadway composer Stephen Sondheim (Company, Into the Woods) and a book by Hugh Wheeler (Candide, Sweeney Todd). It is inspired by the Ingmar Bergman film Smiles of a Summer Night, and the title is a direct translation of the German name for Mozart's "Serenade Number 13 for strings in G major." The show elegantly and humorously portrays the romantic entanglements of several people in Sweden at the turn of the twentieth century. Its score features the Broadway standard song "Send in the Clowns."
Night Music opened on Broadway on February 25, 1973 and played 613 performances (including previews) through August 3, 1974. It won the Tony Award for Best Musical, launched a US tour, and transferred to London's West End in 1975. Revivals have been staged in London and on Broadway. The 2009 Broadway revival was quite successful and featured notable actresses Catherine Zeta-Jones (Chicago, Traffic), who won a Tony for her role, and Angela Lansbury (Mame, Gypsy). After their contracts ended, Broadway favorites Bernadette Peters (Sunday in the Park with George, Annie Get Your Gun) and Elaine Stritch (Company, Bus Stop) stepped in until the show's closing. Order A Little Night Music tickets today and experience this classic show live.Plot Synopsis:
In turn-of-the-20th-century Sweden, the characters enter waltzing somewhat uncomfortably with each other before leaving the stage to the aging Madame Armfeldt and her serious granddaughter, Fredrika. Madame Armfeldt informs Fredrika that the summer night smiles first on the young, second on the fools, and last on the old, and she prepares to watch these phases pass.
Fredrik Egerman is a middle-aged, successful lawyer who has been married to his eighteen-year-old trophy wife, Anne, for eleven months but has never been successful in convincing her to consummate the union. Fredrik's son, Henrik, who is a year older than his stepmother, is frustrated that no one at his seminary school takes him seriously or listens to him. Anne is interested in him, but doesn't fully understand him. Anne promises Fredrik that she will make love to him soon, all the while getting crass advice from her more experienced maidservant, Petra.
Desiree Armfeldt is a famous actress past the pinnacle of her career who now tours in small towns. Though her daughter, Fredrika, misses her, she constantly puts of going to see her, choosing instead to indulge in her glamorous show business life. In town for a play, Desiree encounters Fredrik, an old lover, and with her flirtacious ways ignites the jealousy of Anne, who demands that Fredrik take her home. Meanwhile, Petra tries to seduce the naive Henrik.
Fredrik and Desiree secretly meet and reminisce of their amorous past. Fredrik tries to express how much he loves his wife while Desiree boasts of her affair with the married Dragoon, the possessive Count Carl-Magnus Malcolm. When she learns of Fredrik's sexless marriage, she agrees to relieve him as a favor for old time's sake. When Carl-Magnus bursts into Desiree's apartment, Desiree and Fredrik manage to convince him that their meeting is innocent, and he believes them but instantly dislikes Fredrik. When he returns home to his wife Charlotte (who knows of his infidelity), Carl Magnus learns that her sister is a friend of Anne's.
Charlotte visits Anne, who is shocked and angered at learning of Fredrik's and Desiree's liaison. Desiree convinces her mother to host a party at her country house where Desiree and Anne both hope to win over Fredrik. Carl-Magnus plans to bring Charlotte (uninvited) as a birthday present, but his true motivation is to challenge Fredrik to a duel. Meanwhile, Charlotte plans to seduce Fredrik to make her husband jealous and end his affair.
At the country house, Petra catches the eye of Madame Armfeldt's manservant, Henrik is shocked at learning the name of Desiree's daughter before confessing his love for Anne to her, and Fredrik and Carl-Magnus discuss how enamored with Desiree they both remain in spite of themselves. As the party progresses, the attendants pursue their agendas to often dramatic, sometimes hilarious results. Get your A Little Night Music tickets today to see the intersecting stories unfold.Awards: 1973 Tony Awards: 12 nominations, 6 wins 1973 Drama Desk Awards: 7 nominations, 6 wins 1973 Grammy Awards: Best Musical Show Album 1995 Olivier Awards: 4 nominations, 1 win 2009 Tony Awards: 4 nominations, 1 win 2009 Drama Desk Awards: 3 nominations, 1 win and more... Creative Team: Music & Lyrics Stephen Sondheim Book Hugh Wheeler Based on Smiles of a Summer Night by Ingmar Bergman A Little Night Music News: June 13, 2010 Catherine Zeta-Jones wins the Tony Award for Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Musical for her portrayal of Desiree Armfeldt in the Broadway revival of A Little Night Music.