Thursday, June 16, 2011

Marry Me a Little


"Marry Me a Little"
by Stephen Sondheim
from Company (1970)

Marry me a little,
Love me just enough.
Cry, but not too often,
Play, but not too rough.

Keep a tender distance
So we'll both be free.
That's the way it ought to be.
I'm ready!

Marry me a little,
Do it with a will.
Make a few demands
I'm able to fulfill.

Want me more than others,
Not exclusively.
That's the way it ought to be.
I'm ready!
I'm ready now!

You can be my best friend,
I can be your right arm.
We'll go through a fight or two.
No harm, no harm.

We'll look not too deep,
We'll go not too far.
We won't have to give up a thing,
We'll stay who we are.
Right?
Okay, then.
I'm ready!
I'm ready now!

Someone, marry me a little,
Love me just enough.
Warm and sweet and easy,
Just the simple stuff.

Keep a tender distance
So we'll both be free.
That's the way it ought to be.
I'm ready!

Marry me a little,
Body, heart, and soul.
Passionate as hell,
But always in control.

Want me first and foremost,
Keep me company.
That's the way it ought to be.
I'm ready!
I'm ready now!

Oh, how gently we'll talk,
Oh, how softly we'll tread.
All the stings, the ugly things
We'll keep unsaid.

We'll build a cocoon of love and respect.
You promise whatever you like,
I'll never collect.
Right?
Okay, then.
I'm ready.
I'm ready now.
Someone ...

I'm ready!

So ... the NY Philharmonic version of Company (playing in movie theatres for only a couple of performances) was quite wonderful.  I was pleasantly surprised by a number of things, including how well the non-musical theatre comics (Stephen Colbert, Jon Cryer, and others) performed this difficult material, and how much I actually liked Patti LuPone in the role of Joanne (her rendition of "The Ladies Who Lunch" was RIGHT ON). 

The "revival version" has been a bit altered from the original 1970 version ... the most notable addition is this song, "Marry Me a Little," which is now sung by the lead character, Bobby, as the Act One Finale.  I've ALWAYS had a great deal of difficulty with the inclusion of this song, particularly halfway through the show.  "Marry Me a Little" was an earlier, abandoned attempt for the place now held by "Being Alive" in the show.  It's an AMAZING song, but I feel it is too self-aware for Bobby at the end of Act One, since he is only halfway through his "journey" to deciding that he can't live his life alone.

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