The Concept of Company

Love Actually, that timeless Christmas rom-com, tells the story of eight very different couples dealing with their love lives in a collection of loosely interrelated tales. Similarly, Company doesn’t follow a single narrative, but is a collection of short episodes that have a solitary theme running through them: Relationship. Company realistically explores relationships: happy and sad, successful and unsuccessful, with a future and without.

George Furth (Book), Stephen Sondheim (Music & Lyrics) and Harold Prince (Broadway Director).

George Furth (Book), Stephen Sondheim (Music & Lyrics) and Harold Prince (Broadway Director).

The individual stories of five couples and three single girls are all linked by one thing: Robert. The couples only connection is that they all know Robert. The girls only connection is that they each dated Robert. All these vignettes combine to explore one theme: Robert weighing the pros and cons of entering matrimony or remaining in interminable bachelorhood.

Robert is a character outside of any committed relationship and becomes the audience’s eyes as he observes glimpses of his friend’s marriages and has his own passing romances. These snapshots create questions for Robert, and thereby the audience: Are Robert’s married friends happier because they are married? Is there something wrong with Robert’s life because he’s not? Does Robert need to be in a relationship in order to truly experience life? The musical attempts to answer these questions, or at least allow Robert (and the audience) to draw his own conclusions, by portraying various stages and styles of relationships: Susan & Peter in the midst of a divorce; Amy & Paul about to tie the knot; Johanne on her third husband.

Like Love Actually, there are eight relationships seen throughout Company, but there is a ninth relationship that is over-arching: Robert’s on- and off- relationship with his own opinions regarding marriage. It is this relationship that drives the show and Robert to their conclusion:

“Somebody hold me too close
Somebody force me to care
Somebody make me come through
I'll always be there
As frightened as you of being alive
Being alive, being alive!”

Company is filled with witty, affectionate and downright hilarious songs, performed by an enthusiastic local cast. With only seven performances, you won’t want to miss it!

October 18-26, Victor Harbor Town Hall.