MTW's Fall Musical for 2010
Directed by Colleen Bowen
Performances - Oct. 21-23, 28-30, Nov. 4-6 at 7:30 pm
Special Oct. 31st, Halloween Matinee at 2:00 pm
Tickets now available!
Benjamin Barker, a skilled barber, is falsely charged and sentenced to a life of hard labor in Australia by the corrupt Judge Turpin, who lusts after Barker's wife Lucy. Now under the assumed name "Sweeney Todd", Barker returns to London with sailor Anthony Hope. At his old Fleet Street lodgings above Mrs. Lovett's pie shop, he discovers that Lucy has poisoned herself, and his teenage daughter Johanna is now Turpin's ward, and like her mother before her, is the object of his unwanted affections. Todd vows revenge, reopening his barber shop in the upstairs flat.
While roaming London, Anthony spots Johanna and falls in love with her, but is ejected from the Judge's house by Turpin and his associate, Beadle Bamford. Far from being discouraged, the sailor becomes determined that the pair will elope. Meanwhile, Todd, during a visit to the marketplace, denounces a fraudulent hair tonic by faux-Italian barber Adolfo Pirelli, and later humiliates him in a public shaving contest. Pirelli and his boy assistant, Toby, visit Todd's barbershop. Lovett keeps Toby occupied downstairs, while in the shop, Pirelli reveals himself to be Todd's former assistant and attempts to blackmail him into paying him half of Todd's earnings or he will reveal Todd's real identity. Instead of giving Pirelli a pay off, Todd murders him to protect the secret of his true identity.
Turpin, intending to propose to Johanna, pays a visit to Todd's parlor to groom himself into Johanna's ideal suitor. Recognizing his tormentor, Todd relaxes the judge while preparing to slit his throat. Before he can do so, they are interrupted by Anthony, who, unaware of Turpin's presence, bursts in and reveals his plan to elope with Johanna. Turpin leaves enraged, vowing to never return. His plan thwarted, Todd has an epiphany, and decides to vent his murderous rage upon his customers while waiting for another chance to kill Turpin. He is indiscriminate about his victims he believes that he is punishing the corrupt aristocracy for their exploitation of those below them and, at the same time, saving the lower classes from their misery.
Lovett becomes his willing accomplice, suggesting they dispose of the bodies by baking them into pies to improve her business. Todd enthusiastically agrees, and rigs his barber's chair with a pedal-operated mechanism, which deposits his victims through a trap door into Lovett's bakehouse. As the weeks pass, Todd's murders accumulate (although he is shown sparing a man who brings his wife and daughter). Meanwhile, Anthony begins to search for Johanna, who was sent by Turpin to Fogg's insane asylum as punishment for her refusal to marry him.
The barbering and pie-making business prospers financially, and Lovett takes in young Toby. Anthony finally discovers Johanna's whereabouts and, following Todd's plan, poses as a wig-maker's apprentice, allowing him access to the asylum to put a rescue plan into action. As Anthony is given a short tour of the asylum, he finds Johanna. As Fogg tries to prevent their escape, Anthony finds he cannot shoot Fogg. Johanna grabs the gun and shoots. Todd's motive for assisting is to lure Turpin back to the barber shop, and he writes a letter to the judge to let him know where he will find Johanna. Toby has become wary of Todd, and he tells Lovett of his distrust, unaware of her complicity in his crimes. He promises to protect Mrs. Lovett, whom he has come to love as a surrogate mother. Beadle Bamford arrives at the barber shop and is murdered by Todd, and Lovett informs Todd of Toby's suspicions. The pair search for Toby, whom Lovett has locked in the basement bakehouse to keep him out of the way. He is nowhere to be found, having hidden in the sewers after seeing the Beadle's body drop into the room from the trapdoor above. Meanwhile, Anthony brings a disguised Johanna to the shop, where she hides herself in a trunk in a corner of the room.
An insane beggar woman who has been pestering Todd, Lovett and Anthony throughout the play now makes her way into the shop. As Todd enters, she claims that she recognizes him. Just then, Turpin's voice is heard. Todd quickly slits the beggar woman's throat and deposits her body through the trap door. As Turpin enters, Todd lies to him that Johanna had repented, and offers a free shave. Todd then reveals his true identity and slits Turpin throat and drops him through the trap door. As Johanna peeks out of the trunk, Todd spots her and prepares to slit her throat as well, not recognizing her as his daughter. A scream from Lovett diverts him to the basement, where she tells him that Turpin had still been alive and tried to grab at her dress before bleeding to death. Viewing the corpses in the light of the bakehouse fire, Todd discovers that the beggar woman was his wife, Lucy, whom he had believed to be dead based on Lovett's account of the poisoning. Todd realizes that Lovett knew Lucy was alive. Lovett points out that she never said Lucy died; and, after attempting to convince Sweeney that she misled him for his own good, she confesses she lied because she loves him and would be a better wife than Lucy ever was. Todd forgive's her, waltzing maniacally with her around the bakehouse before hurling her into the open oven. He returns to Lucy and cradles her dead body as Toby emerges, picks up the discarded razor, sneaks up behind the barber, and slits Todd's throat (Todd appears to hear him, but he simply raises his neck, and allows Toby to kill him.) The play ends with Todd bleeding over his dead wife as Toby is very distraught about all the murders.
Sweeney Todd Cast:
Sweeney Todd: John Merritt
Mrs. Lovett: Daina Toevs
Judge: David Williams
Beggar Woman: Kelly Atwood
Anthony: David Harvill
Johanna: Maren Cagle
Beadle: John Mausser
Toby: Seth Chambers
Pirelli: Paul Atwood