Elaine Stritch melting down as she sings “The Ladies Who Lunch” over and over again, into the night. The record producer Thomas Z. Shepard telling her, “It’s just flaccid.” Stephen Sondheim, with elaborate patience, coaching a singer in the proper pronunciation of “bubi.”
Scenes like these make D.A. Pennebaker’s 1970 documentary “Original Cast Album: Company,” filmed during the recording of Mr. Sondheim’s breakout score, a talisman for fans of the composer, “Company” and Broadway musicals in general. The comedian John Mulaney is all of the above, and his fandom has found expression in “Original Cast Album: Co-op,” Wednesday’s episode in the third season of IFC’s affectionate sendup series, “Documentary Now!”
Written by Mr. Mulaney and Seth Meyers, “Co-op” features the cast of a failed musical set in a New York apartment building, who gather for a recording session even as the show’s closing is being announced. Mr. Mulaney, in turtleneck and mutton chops, plays a composer strongly resembling Mr. Sondheim; Paula Pell, a veteran writer for “Saturday Night Live,” struggles like Ms. Stritch; the Broadway performers Renée Elise Goldsberry (“Hamilton”) and Alex Brightman (“School of Rock”) belt the showstopper “Holiday Party” a.k.a. “A Little Cocaine Tonight.”
I spoke about “Company” and “Co-op” with Mr. Meyers, Mr. Mulaney and Mr. Pennebaker at NBC Studios in Rockefeller Center. I also spoke on the phone with Mr. Sondheim. These are edited excerpts from those conversations.
MIKE HALE John, you’ve been pitching “Original Cast Album” for “Documentary Now!” since Season 1. Explain your devotion.
JOHN MULANEY Love of Sondheim, love of “Company,” love of Mr. Pennebaker’s work and the documentary itself. I think the reason it connected with me was that the vibe in the room that I feel in that documentary is very similar to what I felt working at “Saturday Night Live.” The exhaustion, and the amazing talent.
SETH MEYERS “S.N.L.” was a very creative atmosphere and also one where people were excellent at passive aggression. And you really see that —
MULANEY [clapping] That’s it, yes. That thing of, “Maybe we could try it, but funny this time.” And you’re talking to someone you admire and love and are close friends with but you’ll say things like that. And lastly, though no one else did, I would sometimes smoke cigarettes indoors in 30 Rockefeller [Plaza] because we could get away with it, and so that smoky haze of exhaustion. Very familiar.
D.A. PENNEBAKER What was amazing and interesting to me was how young some of the people were. They were barely out of college. It had such a feeling of youthful exuberance.
MULANEY There’s a young woman in her first Broadway show, with a huge orchestra in front of her in a room on, like, 30th Street, just singing the [expletive] out of these songs.
HALE What was most important for getting into character as Sondheim? The cigarette, the 1970s clothes, the sideburns?
MULANEY It was the most physically comfortable acting I’ve ever done. Because to make my face just kind of fall and look tired and not do anything and not smile, and then occasionally smoke a cigarette and shake my head “No,” is so familiar to me.
HALE We arranged for Sondheim to see the episode and I talked to him afterward, and I’ve got a quote here —
MEYERS You should see how much John is leaning in.
MULANEY Please note we all leaned in.
HALE What did you think of Mulaney’s performance?
STEPHEN SONDHEIM It’s fine. I don’t have any comments on it. Everything’s fine.
HALE I’m going to be talking to Mulaney later this week.
SONDHEIM Tell him I thought he was really funny.
MULANEY Oh. Oh. That’s great.
HALE How well did the original documentary capture what went on in the studio that day?
SONDHEIM Perfectly. Pennebaker knows what he’s doing, he knows what to shoot, when to shoot. It’s as true as a newsreel.
MULANEY That’s a little better than “fine.”
MEYERS Well he said “fine” twice.
PENNEBAKER I knew Elaine and I thought she was a funny person but I didn’t know that ability, to drive passion right through the walls. What she did on that first version [of “The Ladies Who Lunch”], it struck me as one of the most fantastic moments of filming. And then when they said, “It won’t do,” I thought, what’s going on? This is crazy.
HALE How daunting was it to write lyrics in the style of Stephen Sondheim?
MEYERS If there are quotes about the songs, I think we’d pass at this point.
MULANEY No, I’d hear them. I read those books [Mr. Sondheim’s “Finishing the Hat” and “Look, I Made a Hat”], and really loved them, and had listened to interviews with him over the years on lyric writing. So I sat for a week or so with the books out, listening to different Sondheim songs, trying to just ape the meter here and there. Also what I had was a rhyming dictionary.
MEYERS You realize how good he is because you have to work so hard just to make a parody version that is close enough to count.
MULANEY That line in “Barcelona” when he rhymes “going” with “Boeing,” I was like, all these songs can stink if I can have one rhyme that I like that much.
HALE The songs in “Co-op” are modeled on Sondheim songs, but not necessarily from “Company.”
MULANEY “Going Up,” the last song, is a bit more like “Merrily We Roll Along.” It kind of has a brighter, more optimistic feel. The opening number [in] “Company” is so complex that I couldn’t even touch it, so I went with “Skid Row” from “Little Shop of Horrors” and copied it, and then our wonderful composer, Eli Bolin, changed the melody so that it was not a copy.
MEYERS “Holiday Party” is just “Not Getting Married.”
MULANEY [Puzzled] Oh, “Cocaine Tonight” — Seth Meyers wrote that song top to bottom and it is just dazzling.
HALE Did you have any qualms about a lyric like, “It would seem/such a dream/if I asked her for a dance/But I just/blew a rail/and I’m gonna [mess] my pants.”
MEYERS You know, comedy writers’ qualms don’t often — pose a challenge.
HALE Just in terms of, Sondheim.
MEYERS Yes. But also, desperate for a laugh. So weighing those …
MULANEY I thought that was an elegant way to use cursing.
MEYERS Hopefully, when Stephen sat down to watch it, he wasn’t hoping for an equal amount of elegance.
MULANEY Yes. Exactly. No one wants it to be BETTER than their thing.
SONDHEIM I thought it was very funny. But I was with some people and the people who had never seen the actual documentary not only didn’t get it, but didn’t think it was fun. Do they get that problem?
MEYERS We — don’t care.
MULANEY With this one, even that it’s airing on TV surprises me. Because I was like, No, that was for us. I genuinely am slightly surprised when I see a promotion that it’s going to be on TV, because I go, Oh right, that party we had.
MEYERS We filmed it! We filmed that party.
HALE How about the songs?
SONDHEIM [with no apparent irony] Well, I would have to listen again. The lyrics are crowded.B:
【见】【道】【祖】【离】【去】，【接】【引】【准】【提】【虽】【是】【成】【圣】【却】【也】【觉】【得】【有】【得】【有】【失】，【不】【免】【心】【中】【忐】【忑】。 【但】【念】【及】【利】【教】【大】【兴】【的】【那】【人】，【准】【提】【一】【咬】【牙】。 “【吾】【等】【成】【圣】，【皆】【为】【造】【福】【洪】【荒】【万】【灵】，【何】【故】【有】【东】【西】【之】【别】，【几】【位】【道】【兄】【此】【言】【不】【妥】。” 【索】【性】【他】【便】【弃】【了】【师】【兄】【的】【称】【呼】，【算】【是】【至】【此】【彻】【底】【分】【清】。 【老】【子】【如】【今】【成】【圣】，【浑】【身】【上】【下】【气】【机】【不】【漏】，【手】【持】【木】【柺】，【只】【是】【淡】【淡】【瞟】【了】【眼】
【金】【瓶】【儿】【面】【上】【尴】【尬】【之】【色】【一】【闪】【即】【逝】，【旋】【即】【又】【露】【出】【妩】【媚】【的】【笑】【颜】，【十】【分】【光】【棍】【的】【说】【道】“【道】【爷】【还】【真】【是】【慧】【眼】，【这】【都】【被】【你】【看】【穿】【了】~” “【瓶】【儿】【跟】【鬼】【厉】【可】【是】【竞】【争】【关】【系】，【这】【么】【做】【也】【无】【可】【厚】【非】。【难】【不】【成】【让】【我】【一】【个】【弱】【女】【子】【去】【跟】【他】【硬】【拼】【硬】【抢】【吗】？” 【陈】【晨】【闻】【言】【不】【以】【为】【然】，【心】【中】【腹】【诽】【道】“【你】【若】【是】【弱】【女】【子】，【这】【天】【下】【的】【男】【子】【还】【不】【得】【羞】【愧】【至】【死】…” 【金】【瓶】
【在】【和】【伯】【明】【翰】【的】【联】【赛】【杯】【半】【决】【赛】【首】【回】【合】【的】【比】【赛】【中】，【两】【名】【曼】【联】【青】【年】【队】【的】【小】【球】【员】【得】【到】【了】【一】【线】【队】【的】【首】【秀】【甚】【至】【是】【首】【发】【的】【机】【会】，【并】【且】【表】【现】【出】【色】，【分】【别】【是】18【岁】【的】【杰】【西】·【林】【加】【德】【和】【还】【未】【满】18【岁】【的】【保】【罗】·【博】【格】【巴】。 【在】【贝】【尔】【的】【记】【忆】【中】，【本】【来】【这】【两】【位】【曼】【联】U18【青】【年】【队】【的】【主】【力】【队】【员】，【在】【本】【赛】【季】【是】【没】【有】【得】【到】【进】【入】【一】【线】【队】【大】【名】【单】【的】【机】【会】【的】，【更】【别】大乐透开奖结果彩吧【远】【在】【齐】【彦】【冰】【几】【人】【百】【里】【外】【的】【地】【方】，【这】【里】【有】【着】【密】【密】【麻】【麻】【的】【古】【建】【筑】【群】，【虽】【和】【齐】【彦】【冰】【身】【处】【的】【这】【个】【地】【方】【一】【样】，【这】【些】【古】【建】【筑】【群】【都】【已】【经】【半】【坍】【塌】，【化】【成】【了】【废】【墟】，【但】【是】【可】【以】【想】【象】【当】【年】【的】【恢】【弘】。 【最】【让】【人】【吃】【惊】【的】【不】【是】【这】【些】【连】【绵】【不】【绝】【的】【建】【筑】，【以】【及】【建】【筑】【残】【垣】【断】【壁】【上】【刻】【印】【着】【的】【玄】【奥】【图】【文】。 【而】【是】【这】【些】【连】【绵】【无】【尽】【的】【古】【建】【筑】【群】，【竟】【是】【围】【在】【三】【座】【火】【山】【的】
【再】【次】【进】【入】【电】【影】【播】【映】【厅】，【姜】【成】【明】【显】【感】【到】【一】【种】【不】【一】【样】【的】【气】【氛】。 【上】【部】【电】【影】【这】【个】【播】【映】【厅】【明】【显】【没】【有】【满】【人】，【可】【林】【泽】【轩】【这】【部】，【满】【满】【当】【当】【坐】【了】【整】【厅】【的】【人】。 【不】【知】【不】【觉】【中】，【林】【泽】【轩】【的】【票】【房】【号】【召】【力】【已】【经】【开】【始】【超】【越】【一】【些】【成】【名】【已】【久】【的】【前】【辈】【了】。 【当】【然】【这】【也】【跟】【他】【勇】【于】【尝】【试】【各】【种】【各】【样】【不】【同】【的】【题】【材】【有】【关】，【要】【是】【他】【一】【直】【拍】【浪】【漫】【爱】【情】【片】，【估】【计】【也】【没】【这】【效】
【起】【起】【伏】【伏】，【跌】【跌】【撞】【撞】，【新】【书】【终】【于】【出】【来】【了】！ 【名】【叫】《【修】【仙】【我】【靠】【集】【五】【福】》，【希】【望】【大】【家】【伙】【们】【能】【去】【收】【藏】、【推】【荐】【一】【波】，【如】【以】【前】【一】【样】，【望】【大】【家】【继】【续】【支】【持】【我】。 【新】【书】【一】【波】【三】【折】。 【先】【是】【准】【备】【好】【的】【点】【子】【因】【为】【某】【些】【原】【因】，【无】【法】【写】。 【这】【本】【书】【写】【完】【后】，【编】【辑】【又】【建】【议】【修】【改】，【所】【以】【来】【来】【回】【回】【折】【腾】【到】【现】【在】。 【所】【幸】，【一】【切】【都】【按】【计】【划】【进】【行】【着】。
【导】【弹】【准】【备】【就】【绪】， 【航】【母】【也】【在】【朝】【着】【东】【太】【平】【洋】【这】【边】【靠】【过】【来】。 【数】【百】【架】【直】【升】【机】【已】【经】【准】【备】【起】【飞】，【弹】【药】【库】【充】【足】，****【等】【特】【效】【武】【器】【也】【配】【备】【了】【无】【数】。 【但】【当】【两】【条】【巨】【龙】【出】【现】【的】【时】【候】，【只】【是】【一】【声】【龙】【吟】，【仿】【佛】【晴】【天】【霹】【雳】【的】【龙】【吟】，【所】【有】【白】【人】【仿】【佛】【被】【骨】【子】【里】【传】【承】【的】【东】【西】【影】【响】【了】。 【他】【们】【全】【部】【在】【那】【一】【瞬】【间】【失】【控】【了】！ 【他】【们】【失】【去】【了】【一】【切】【知】
【妇】【好】【被】【孟】【贲】【乱】【拳】【打】【死】【在】【地】【上】，【其】【余】【跟】【随】【妇】【好】【的】【骑】【兵】，【也】【是】【全】【部】【被】【屠】【戮】【一】【空】。 【叶】【公】【骑】【马】【赶】【来】，【见】【到】【被】【打】【死】【的】【妇】【好】，【不】【由】【又】【急】【又】【气】，【用】【手】【指】【着】【孟】【贲】：“【郎】【中】【令】，【为】【什】【么】【我】【说】【你】【你】【不】【听】【呢】，【都】【说】【了】【留】【活】【口】【留】【活】【口】，【此】【女】【乃】【是】【巾】【帼】【之】【才】，【若】【是】【能】【降】【于】【新】【国】，【绝】【对】【有】【大】【用】，【可】【你】【竟】【然】【活】【生】【生】【将】【她】【打】【死】？” 【孟】【贲】【有】【些】【摸】【不】【着】【头】