Director’s Brief: “Sweeney Todd” on a Loop

by Karen Azenberg I have begun what I call my subliminal work on Sweeney Todd. I’ve probably said this before, but one of the first things I do when working on a musical is learn the music. I mean really learn the music—every beat, every accent, every fermata and caesura, every melody, every theme. The … Continued

Director’s Brief: A Few Days of R & R

by Karen Azenberg Regards from New York City and upstate New York. I am on a combined business/vacation trip to the East Coast, grabbing some meetings with the Sweat director and design team, and also looking ahead to the 2019–2020 season. (!!!) And, of course, meeting with licensors to see what titles might be available … Continued

Director’s Brief: That’s “Oslo.”

by Karen Azenberg I’m now casting and preparing for Oslo, the first show of our season. I know, we just ended last season. And this is supposed to be our downtime. Well, first of all, there is no downtime. And second, continue reading.   Exactly one year ago today, I was in Jerusalem. It was … Continued

Director’s Brief: The Broadway Review…

by Karen Azenberg The Broadway Review… OK, I have seen them all! Twenty-seven shows. Ten in the last two weeks—and two of those were two-part shows. So, actually, 14 shows in the last two weeks. It was an interesting season. Frankly, a little lightweight for my taste. But something for everyone, to be sure. The … Continued

Director’s Brief: I can’t believe the season is over.

by Karen Azenberg Attend the tale of Sweeney Todd… After a week of Sweeney auditions, I have finally been able to get “Waterloo” out of my head—though now that I’m back in Salt Lake, it may creep back into my consciousness. It is absolutely fascinating to me that both here in Salt Lake and in … Continued

Director’s Brief: The show must go on…

by Karen Azenberg In the category of “The show must go on”… During the first act of Mamma Mia! on Monday night, Coleen Sexton—who plays Donna—jumped a mere 18 inches off a piece of scenery and broke her foot. It’s a scenario that theatre folk will remember and talk about for months, if not years, … Continued

Director’s Brief: We made it!

by Karen Azenberg We made it! Mamma Mia! opens tonight. Our disco adventure on a Greek island is on! The last show of the season—particularly a big musical like this one—challenges the talented (and, at this point, exhausted) PTC production staff. As I sit writing this, the last painting is being put on the set. … Continued

Director’s Brief: The U may be quiet, but PTC is humming

by Karen Azenberg It is graduation today here at the U, but not quite the end of the season for PTC. We start tech today for Mamma Mia! – orchestra rehearsal was last night, as well as our first spacing rehearsals on stage. However, since I am not directing I can focus on next season. … Continued

Director-Choreographer Patricia Wilcox on “Mamma Mia!”

What is left to say about a show that has been seen by 60 million people in 40 countries and has been translated into 23 languages? It is possible that the allure of this show comes from its relatability. Mamma Mia! can be seen as a tapestry of many of our lives. Music by nature … Continued

Director’s Brief: Spring Power Trips

by Karen Azenberg A few, quick thoughts for this week… As this posts, I’ll be getting off the plane in New York. The red eye. My least favorite travel option. But our big Hamilton fundraising event was Thursday night in Salt Lake City, so if I wanted to be in New York City on Friday, … Continued