Broadway stars gathered in Times Square on Sunday to pay tribute to the late Stephen Sondheim by performing a song from his musical Sunday in the Park with George.
Mourners packed together outside to sing the song Sunday in honour of the composer, who passed away on Friday at the age of 91 in his Roxbury, Connecticut home. Miranda and Bareilles were joined by the likes of Josh Groban, Laura Benanti, Brian Stokes Mitchell, and Reeve Carney.
Waitress composer and lyricist Bareilles, who can be seen singing along in videos posted to social media, told Variety that the performance “felt like church – in his remembrance, we did what theatre does best. We sang and raised our voices and came together in community.”
In a photo with Miranda posted to Instagram, the 41-year-old wrote that the Hamilton creator read from Sondheim’s collection of lyrics Look, I Made A Hat.
“Singing the sermon of #sondheim. Together in community, in tears, in time,” she wrote. “Lin reading from the book of Stephen, gathering us in, toward the soft ache of loss and reverence and memory and holding how we are all held by the work of this one man.”
“We don’t know what we mean to each other,” Bareilles continued. “We can’t possibly. It is everything. I am thankful for this warm, kind, musical heart made of theater going, loving, leading souls that is beating on this not so ordinary Sunday.”
Groban told Variety, “Everybody who’s here has a touchstone for why Sondheim’s music has brought them to this place. And whatever part of the entertainment industry we’re in, everybody is here because we were first influenced by Sondheim’s music. To mourn his passing is a crushing blow.”
Sondheim’s passing was announced via his attorney and friend, F. Richard Pappas. He is survived by his husband, Jeffrey Romley, who he wed in 2017.
– Cover Media