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Sondheim: Sondheim Tribute Revue

Caitlin Zerra Rose, Aïssatou Thiam, Darlene Van Alstyne, Grace Fluharty, and Nina Pagan in Sondheim. Photo: Michael & Suz Karchmer

Review by Anne MacNeil

Do you know that thing when you’re at a concert and a piece finishes and the audience takes a collective deep breath, then exhales, and only then applauds? It’s a sign of wonderment, that a performance has caught you between two worlds. On Thursday night in Fishermen Hall, that happened three times.

Sondheim: Sondheim Tribute Revue brings six strong, emotional voices together in this former high-school auditorium, enlivening Sondheim’s melodies and, of course, his lyrics. Peregrine Theatre Ensemble has undertaken many fine productions; Sondheim continues on this path.

The singers are Nina Pagan, Caitlin Zerra Rose, Aïssatou Thiam, Darlene van Alstyne, and Grace Fluharty. Also singing is the marvelous pianist, Kelly Taylor Brown, who plays throughout. 

Taylor Brown gets to sing “Send in the Clowns,” the Sondheim number that has had the greatest reach outside Broadway. Her rendition could break a heart, so sad and beautiful is it. Fluharty just about brings down the house with the nigh-impossible “Not Getting Married Today.” She makes light work of the boldest tongue twister on Broadway. Her voice has a maturity to it, round and full. Thiam fills the air with warmth and fine expression, wounding us with her rendition of “Another Hundred People.” 

“Could I Leave You” erupts with piss and vinegar when Rose reminds us that marrying for money may not make you happy after all. Pagan may well have heard this before, but she sings with verve and nuance recalling Bernadette Peters. As Von Alstyne brings the room to a hush of admiration with two numbers in a row, “Who’s that Woman” and “The Ladies Who Lunch,” it’s clear how versatile a singer she is. Local audiences will understand.

Of the fourteen-thousand-and-thirty-seven songs Sondheim composed over five decades, these twenty-five, performed by voices sympathetic in tones and emotion, will send you out into the summer’s night feeling far dreamier than when your day began.

Given the tremendous warmth of Fishermen’s Hall, perhaps one night the cast could go acoustic. More swoons would be sure to follow.

Peregrine Theatre Ensemble presents Sondheim: Sondheim Tribute Revue, Wednesdays through Saturdays, 7:30 p.m., at Fishermen Hall, 12 Winslow St., Provincetown through July 29. For tickets ($57.50) and information call 774.538.9084 or visit

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Ginger Mountain (MS Communications Media, BA Fine Arts/Teaching Certification K-12) has been part of the graphic design team at Provincetown Magazine since 2008. Ginger has worked as a creative director, individual contractor, and freelance designer with clients representing many areas —business software, consumer products, professional services, entertainment, and network hardware to name just a few — providing creative layout and development of a wide range of print media content. Her clients ranged from small local businesses to large corporations and Fortune 500 companies, from New Hampshire to Georgia

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