Edinburgh Fringe Review: Company
Company features music and lyrics from Stephen Sondheim and made its Broadway debut in 1970.
Its plot is simple – Robert is a single 29 year-old New Yorker with three casual girlfriends, whose friends are all married. The show centres around Robert and the five married couples of his friendship group, who all dote on him and would love to see him get married as soon as possible.
The audience gets a brief insight into each couple’s relationship, revealing what marriages are really like behind the scenes, despite their attempts to portray marriage as a perfect institution.
One couple, Peter and Susan, cheerfully tell Robert they’re getting a divorce, but will keep living together and seem thrilled with the arrangement. Another couple, Sarah and Harry, end up having a karate fight on stage after Harry doesn’t believe Sarah has been taking karate lessons to get fit.
The show is a comedy but also touches on serious themes such as love, happiness, and the existence of marriage as an institution. It does so in a light-hearted way with plenty of catchy songs.
All of the performers are excellent singers; it feels as if you're watching a West End production, not a fringe theatre company. The company is made up entirely of Edinburgh students, but the quality of their work was so high that you'd fail to notice.
Staging and production are also at an excellent standard. A nice touch is that each couple has their own colour scheme, symbolising their attempts at coordinating their marriages.
Sadly, Company has already come to the end of its fringe run; however, with the quality of this show, seeing any EUSOG production in the future is highly recommended. As is seeing Company in theatres elsewhere - the soundtrack has been stuck in my head ever since!
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