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This musical, with a book by James Goldman, takes place at a reunion of the Weisman (pseudo-Ziegfeld) Follies girls, gathering at their old theatre on the eve of its leveling to become a parking lot. When Sally tries to rekindle her old flame with Ben (who married her best friend from the old days, Phyllis), chaos ensues until Sally, Buddy (her husband), Ben, and Phyllis break down and acknowledge their follies in a dream-Follies sequence, "Loveland."

The entire show is interspersed with ex-showgirls reprising their old big numbers, and the atmosphere is heightened by the presence of the ghosts of everyone's former selves, who sometimes sing along, sometimes reenact important events, and sometimes even interact with the present. Follies contains two scores -- the Follies pastiche numbers and the book numbers. The convergence of the two scores results in the Loveland sequence, where the characters use traditional songs to comment on their current concerns. The final piece (in the original script) is "Live Laugh, Love" where Ben attempts to present the suave, man-about-town character, but is unable to continue the charade and breaks down as the chorus continues, highlighting the dichotomy between forms.

In 1987, Follies was reworked for the West End stage. This new production featured a completely new book and five new songs, replacing others which were cut.

Follies includes the songs "Too Many Mornings," "I'm Still Here," and "Losing My Mind."

Show Data

Original Broadway Production Info:

Opened April 4, 1971
Closed July 1, 1972
Ran 522 Performances
Theatre Winter Garden Theatre
Music Stephen Sondheim
Lyrics Stephen Sondheim
Book James Goldman
Producers Harold Prince
  in association with Ruth Mitchell
Directors Harold Prince
  Michael Bennett
Scene Designer Boris Aronson
Costume Designer Florence Klotz
Lighting Designer Tharon Musser
Dance Music Arranger John Berkman
Musical Direction Harold Hastings
  Paul Gemignani
Orchestrations Jonathan Tunick

Musical Numbers:

  1. Prologue
  2. Beautiful Girls
  3. Don't Look at Me
  4. Waiting for the Girls Upstairs
  5. Rain on the Roof
  6. Ah, Paris!
  7. Broadway Baby
  8. The Road You Didn't Take
  9. In Buddy's Eyes
  10. Bolero d'Amour
  11. Who's That Woman?
  12. I'm Still Here
  13. Too Many Mornings
  14. The Right Girl
  15. One More Kiss
  16. Could I Leave You?
  17. Loveland
  18. You're Gonna Love Tomorrow
  19. Love Will See Us Through
  20. The God-Why-Don't-You-Love-Me Blues (Buddy's Blues)
  21. Losing My Mind
  22. The Story of Lucy and Jessie
  23. Live, Laugh, Love

Added Songs:

  1. Ah, But Underneath
  2. Country House
  3. Make the Most of Your Music
  4. Social Dancing

Cut Songs:

  1. All Things Bright and Beautiful
  2. Can That Boy Foxtrot!
  3. Uptown Downtown

Original Broadway Cast:

Major-Domo Dick Latessa
Sally Durant Plummer Dorothy Collins
Young Sally Marti Rolph
Christine Donovan Ethel Barrymore Colt
Willy Wheeler Fred Kelly
Stella Deems Mary McCarty
Max Deems John J. Martin
Heidi Schiller Justine Johnston
Chauffeur John Grigas
Meredith Lane Sheila Smith
Roscoe Michael Bartlett
Deedee West Helon Blount
Hattie Walker Ethel Shutta
Emily Whitman Marcie Stringer
Theodore Whitman Charles Welch
Vincent Victor Griffin
Vanessa Jayne Turner
Young Vincent Michael Misita
Young Vanessa Graciela Daniele
Solange LaFitte Fifi D'Orsay
Carlotta Campion Yvonne De Carlo
Phyllis Rogers Stone Alexis Smith
Benjamin Stone John McMartin
Young Phyllis Virginia Sandifur
Young Ben Kurt Peterson
Buddy Plummer Gene Nelson
Young Buddy Harvey Evans
Dimitri Weismann Arnold Moss
Kevin Ralph Nelson
Young Stella Julie Pars
Young Heidi Victoria Mallory
Party Musicians Taft Jordan
  Aaron Bell
  Charles Spies
  Robert Curtis
Show Girls Suzanne Briggs
  Trudy Carson
  Kathie Dalton
  Ursula Maschmeyer
  Linda Perkins
  Margot Travers
Singers, Dancers Graciela Daniele
  Mary Jane Houdina
  Sonja Levkova
  Rita O'Connor
  Julie Pars
  Suzanne Rogers
  Roy Barry
  Steve Boockvor
  Michael Misita
  Joseph Nelson
  Ralph Nelson
  Ken Urmston
  Peter Walker
  Donald Weissmuller


1972 Tony Awards

  1. Best Music/Lyrics (Stephen Sondheim)
  2. Best Director (Harold Prince, Michael Bennett)
  3. Best Actress, Musical (Alexis Smith)
  4. Choreographer (Michael Bennett)
  5. Scenic Design (Boris Aronson)
  6. Costumes (Florence Klotz)
  7. Lighting (Tharon Musser)

New York Drama Critics' Award

  1. Best Musical


  1. Original Broadway Cast, 1971
    Angel, 2DM 7 64666 2 0

  2. Follies in Concert, 1985
    RCA Victor RCD2-7128

  3. Original London Cast, 1987
    First Night Encore CD3

Secondary performance rights handled by Music Theatre International

Discuss this show in's community forum: Finishing the Chat... ››



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Assassins is about how society interprets the American Dream, marginalizes outsiders and rewrites and sanitizes its collective history. "Something Just Broke" is a major distraction and plays like an afterthought, shoe horned simply to appease. The song breaks the dramatic fluidity and obstructs the overall pacing and climactic arc which derails the very intent and momentum that makes this work so compelling...”
- Mark Bakalor

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“I found [the Sondheim Celebration's Company] to be completely delightful. Almost all of the numbers excited and energized me, and most of the scenes were about as pitch-perfect as you can get. I just sat there with a big smile on my face the whole show.

Which is not to say that it is perfect...”
- popcornonmyknees

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