Sitting in LaGuardia, boarding our flight home-sweet-home soon. Paramount’s Sweeney Todd auditions at the NYC AEA office have fascinated and intrigued with how difficult the leading roles of Todd and Lovett are. Every aspect of Stephen Sondheim’s masterpiece demands we keep pushing and striving to develop our very best creative take on it. It resonates with our own times powerfully and creepily. Citizens swindled and betrayed by an appetite and hunger outside their control are conned into eating their own, cannibalizing their own group. Poisoned and toxic, they approach us to tell the tale. The leads, Todd and Lovett, are examples of how ordinary humans can become monsters capable of atrocity when vengeance and survival are forced upon perfectly good, wholesome people. There is the penny dreadful gallows humor of horror and gore not unlike today’s political satire. How we need to laugh lest we implode; lose our minds to the insanity around us. It’s all perfectly grotesquely beautiful. Perfectly human.

Tomorrow morning, we have a production meeting with our entire design team and production and tech directors. It’s been a grueling two days. Here’s to a good night’s sleep. Ah, yes, it’ll probably be Wednesday when you see this, apologies, dear reader!

Love & thanks,