The incomparable Stephen Sondheim brought his sensational Follies to the stage in 1971 where it was hailed as "monumental theater" by The New York Times. Fourteen years later, the magic was recreated by an unparalleled gat... more »hering of stage and screen luminaries performing with the New York Philharmonic at Lincoln Center for a wildly enthusiastic audience. This one-night-only performance became a legendary event in Broadway history--Follies in Concert! The evolution of this unique, historic event is exclusively captured in this film, from the first rehearsal--just four days before the show--to the last-second butterflies just before the curtain rose. This is a rare treasure for all fans of musical theater. Includes the memorable songs "Losing My Mind" and "I'm Still Here" and an all-star cast: Carol Burnett, Liz Callaway, Betty Comden, Barbara Cook, Adolph Green, George Hearn, Howard McGillin, Liliane Montevecchi, Phyllis Newman, Mandy Patinkin, Lee Remick, and Elaine Stritch. 90 minutes.« less
Barbara R. from DAVIS, CA Reviewed on 10/22/2011...
I had actually been in a community theatre production of Follies years ago, so I was looking forward to having this DVD in my collection. Figured I'd watch just enough to confirm the disk was sound. Ended up watching the whole thing, then and there! Excellent cast, some of Sondheim's best, 5 star all the way.
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Too Short a Showing of a Terrific Concert
Dan Sherman | Alexandria, VA USA | 07/12/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is a documentary of a 1985 concert performance from Lincoln Center of Stephen Sondheim's 1971 "Follies." A really great cast of Broadway greats was brought together for this concert that was basically put together is a few days. Although the backstage elements of the show are great (e.g., showing actors working through dance numbers, flubbing lyrics, Sondheim talking with the actors), the real interest of the show is in the performaces themselves that make up about half of the 90 minute documentary. The unfortunate thing about the documentary is that we only see about half the concert, mostly in the form of excerpts. It really would have been much better to see a COMPLETE version of the concert. One really wonders why this wasn't filmed and made available in some format. There is, however, a 2-CD album of the whole concert to fill in the gaps.This concern aside, the concert is a great chance to see the likes of Barbara Cook, Lee Remick, George Hearn, Carol Burnett, Elaine Stritch, and Adolph Green and Betty Comden singing and within the frame of a concert performance) acting their way through one of the great musicals of our age. This DVD is a definite buy!"
Lyn Hollis | Tellico Village, TN | 08/23/2001
(1 out of 5 stars)
"This is not "Follies in Concert," it is the reader's digest version. Many numbers have been truncated and many omitted, most notably "Waiting for the Boys Upstairs" and "The Road I Didn't Take." While the concert itself ran over 130 minutes, the DVD is made from a 90 minute video tape. Include the fact that they added about 30 minutes of rehearsal interviews, and the concert is basically cut in half. In addition, the DVD is video tape quality and the sound is unstable. All in all, a very disappointing recording for Sondheim lovers."
This Should Get 5 Stars, But...!
T. Halkin | Munich, Germany | 08/26/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Thank God that there is a full recording of this evening available on CD, because this video only shows about 45 minutes of the actual concert. Granted, they are 45 minutes that are not to be missed with this brilliant cast and this amazing show from Stephen Sondheim. This is truly a Broadway event. The documentary, which makes up most of the running time of the video is a lot of fun, but cutting the actual concert down to bare bones is a sin. We who adored Sondheim should appeal to the producers and beg that this magical night be released on video in its entirety."
Hats off, here they come those beautiful girls!
Rick D. Barszcz | bristol, ct United States | 07/15/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This is by far my favorite musical, not the concert but the actual musical from the 70's. When i saw Alexis Smith the first time i fell deeply in love. Of course i was only 24 at the time.Even though this is just the concert version minus the terrible cutting and editing it's better than nothing at all. This cast was also wonderful with it's vintage and well polished cast, I gave it the four stars only because it's not as complete as the CD. After all most of the people that would buy the concert version would also have been fans of the original show itself so why not include all the production numbers.Maybe if enough people make compaints do you think they may re-do this DVD?To all those wonderful women who were in the original production,,,Hats off, to those wonderful girls.. The likes of this will never come again."
Stephen Halpin | Orlando, FL United States | 05/14/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"It has been noted several times that this DVD is not a recording of the famous concert at Lincoln Center, but a documentary of that concert including rehearsals and some of the concert. The concert was used as the platform to make the first full recording of this incredible score. Many may not realise that in order to preserve the show on 1 LP, the original Broadway cast recording had substantial cuts made while it was being recorded. The OBC cd's released later include only one cut song from that original cast recording. The OBC recording of Follies is a crime to be sure.But back to the DVD. This is an interesting behind the scenes look at the mad house it took to present a full stage concert of Follies in about a week. It is interesting to watch Thomas Z. Shepherd at work here as the record producer. (An interesting comparison would be to buy the documentary of the recording of Company to see a younger Sheperd at work) There are scenes in the rehearsal halls, the terror of opening night and wonderful scenes on stage.If you are a theater lover, this DVD is a wonderful documentary of how a show like this is put together. And there are wonderful clips of Carol Burnett singing "I'm Still Here" and Elaine Stritch singing "Broadway Baby". And who can ever resist Barbara Cook?The packaging may be confusing for die hard theater fans. The DVD cover uses the famous David Byrd logo from the original Broadway cast and not the photograph cover from the recording. But dont let that fool you, this documentary is worthy of any serious theater lovers collection."