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‘Here We Are’ Celebrity Amber Grey On Stephen Sondheim’s Ultimate Musical – WWD

Amber Grey is right here: sitting within the again row of the theater at The Let fall on a mid-November afternoon, a cup of tea in hand. Sitting on a high-backed bar stool, the actress is dealing with the unfilled degree the place in different hours she is going to carry out the nearest appearing of “Here We Are.” The actress stars within the brandnew musical manufacturing via Stephen Sondheim and David Ives, remarkable for being Sondheim’s ultimate paintings ahead of he died in past due 2021.

“I auditioned on March 22, which is Sondheim’s and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s birthday,” says Grey of coming aboard the challenge. “So everything about it felt kind of blessed from the beginning.”

The musical is in keeping with two motion pictures via Surrealist Spanish filmmaker Luis Buñuel, “The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie” and “Exterminating Angel.” Within the first part of the manufacturing, inside a sparse i’m ready, the forged embarks on a neverending quest for brunch; in the second one function, they in finding themselves camped out within the ornate lounge of a chum’s property — and with out rational clarification, they’re not able to let go. The top of the arena looms outdoor of the privileged territory.

“I’m spiritually in a place where I am thinking about these things,” Grey says of the manufacturing, a social satire that peddles in existentialism. “And I love that those two men, David Ives and Sondheim, in the last third of their lives as seniors are also attracted to those movies and these questions. I find that very telling.”

Amber Gray

Amber Grey

Lexie Moreland/WWD

The actress involves the brandnew manufacturing from a longer term with “Hadestown,” which earned her a Tony nomination in 2019 for her portrayal of Persephone. Next Grey left the position in 2022, she went directly to megastar in a Sam Gold-directed manufacturing of “Macbeth,” and previous this time made her solo live performance debut with “Gray Matter” at 54 Under, which explored the area of her musical theater influences.

“I really believe you attract where you’re at,” Grey says. “And at the time I read the script [for ‘Here We Are’], which was early March, I was writing my solo cabaret. I had come off of a year of studying lots of philosophy, psychology, neuroscience, religion. I’d been hanging out with a lot of midwives and death doulas, taking shaman earth medicine ceremonies. So a play about existentialism — oh my gosh. I was like, well, this is coming to me for a reason right now,” she provides. “I do think about the meaning of life all the time, and how to live well and the end of the world. These are the things I think about every day. So it was really bizarre to read a play that was exactly where I was at spiritually. Everything about it felt really kismet from the beginning.”

The manufacturing’s surrealist ambiguity opens up the potential of diverse interpretations inside the similar public. To a couple, it’s a comedy; for others, the sense of existential dread may resonate extra strongly.

“Steven Spielberg was able to finally come last night,” Grey says. Spielberg, who collaborated with Sondheim at the 2021 movie adaptation of “West Side Story,” is a manufacturer of the “Here We Are.” “He was like, ‘so fun, so depressing — it’s like a nuclear winter.’ And I was like — yeah,” she continues. “And some people watch it and don’t get any of that. They don’t think any of those deeper questions about the meaning of life. And that’s what’s so beautiful about theater. People interpret it in all kinds of ways and you cannot control that outcome.”

Era Sondheim gave up the ghost ahead of the manufacturing at The Let fall was once solid — and ahead of the script was once completed — Grey says she was once ready to fulfill the composer previous in her profession, nearest a efficiency of “Natasha, Pierre & the Great Comet of 1812.” “He was a big Dave Malloy fan,” says Grey, who starred within the Broadway manufacturing.

“So much of my musical theater career has been with these contemporary musical theater composers who I adore, like Anaïs Mitchell, Heather Christian, Dave Malloy, The Bengsons. The sound of the American musical is changing over the years and has a lot of space for different types of voices,” says Grey, who included a lot of the ones composers into her solo display previous this time.

“I did not study musical theater; I studied just straight acting. But I had this idea in my head while I was studying that there was a musical theater sound, because I think there was for many years. And now it’s a bit more diverse what voices we associate with musical theater,” provides Grey, who skilled at NYU’s Tisch Faculty of the Arts. “I never thought I was going to originate a Sondheim musical. It’s a piece of history and I’m very honored to be a part of it.”

“Here We Are,” which opened in past due October, is lately prolonged via mid-January.

“It’s felt really juicy, and it just continues to get better and better, which is the dream, right?” Grey says. “I hope to keep discovering and keep getting better at it, which means the work becomes easier and more fun. And then it’ll go away — like all theater does.” 

Amber Gray

Amber Grey

Lexie Moreland/WWD

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