Captivating Sweeney

Oct 11 2016 | By More

Captivate Theatre announce #EdFringe 2017 show

Captivate Theatre is to stage the Stephen Sondheim musical Sweeney Todd as part of its offer during the Edinburgh Fringe 2017.

The company, which has just revealed that two of its 2016 #EdFringe productions were official sell outs, will be holding auditions for the production in the New Year.

Although it is well known for its work with young performers, the company has emphasised that for this show it is looking to audition an “age-appropriate” cast – “20, 30, 40, 50 or 60 years old – you can apply!”.


Musical director Tommie Travers said: “Just to confirm, we’re looking for an age-appropriate cast for this production. That includes everyone over 18.”

Hugh Wheeler’s book, based on Christopher Bond’s play, follows wronged barber Benjamin Barker who returns to London after 15 years in a prison hulk in Australia. Reinventing himself as Sweeney Todd, he seeks revenge on the judge who falsely imprisoned him and stole his beautiful young wife.

He famously teams up with Fleet Street pie shop owner Mrs Lovett. When she can’t get enough meat for her pies, he is able to provide her with a regular supply of his murder victims to dispose of – a partnership which works for them both.


The original 1979 Broadway production swept the boards at both the Tony’s and Drama Desk awards that year. The London production the following year won two Oliviers, including best new musical.

Tim Burton directed a cinema adaptation of the musical in 2007, using the musicals full title: Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street. It starred Johnny Depp as Benjamin Barker/Sweeney Todd with Helena Bonham Carter as Mrs. Lovett.

The musical has been produced a few times in Edinburgh in recent years. The A-Team presented the schools version (★★★★☆ Powerful and polished) in 2014. Edinburgh Musical Theatre’s 2012 production integrated British Sign Language into the performance (★★★☆☆ Groundbreaking)

Sondheim’s score is considered to be among his most complex, relying on on counterpoint and rich, angular harmonies with compositional style that has been compared to Ravel and Prokofiev.

Writing on Facebook, Tommie Travers added: “Going to be the most challenging show I’ve done to date, but I can’t wait to get started!”

Auditions are due to take place “in the new year”. Anyone wishing to register their interest, should email


Captivate Theatre website:

Captivate Theatre on Facebook: captivatetheatre

Captivate Theatre on Twitter: @Captivate_LTD

Click on the images below to go to Amazon and purchase the OST, Libretti and vocal score:

The Tim Burton Movie is also available:


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  1. Sweeney Casting Call : All Edinburgh | Jan 8 2017