Stephen Sondheim’s Final Musical to Premiere Off-Broadway This Fall
The musical, which was formerly known as ‘Square One,’ is inspired by two Luis Buñuel films.
BY CAITLIN HUSTON, MARCH 16, 2023
Stephen Sondheim’s final musical will have its world premiere in New York this fall.
The musical, which was formerly known as Square One and now entitled Here We Are, is inspired by two Luis Buñuel films, The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie and The Exterminating Angel. Joe Mantello (Wicked, Assassins) directs the musical, which features a book by David Ives.
Performances will begin in September for a strictly limited engagement Off-Broadway at The Shed’s Griffin Theater.
Sondheim, who died in November 2021 at the age of 91, had been working on this project for years. A production of a musical, created by Ives and Sondheim, was set to premiere Off-Broadway at The Public Theater in 2017, but never made it to the stage.
In September 2021, the legendary composer told Stephen Colbert that he was writing Square One with Ives and hoped to stage it in the next season. In what may have been his final interview, in November, Sondheim told The New York Times that he had not yet finished the show, but still hoped to see it premiere.
Before Sondheim’s death, Nathan Lane made an appearance on the Today show and said he and Bernadette Peters had both participated in a reading of the musical. (Rumors spread in December that the two were set to star in an upcoming production of Square One on Broadway, but that claim was not true).
Tom Kirdahy (The Inheritance) is producing the musical, with executive producers Sue Wagner, John Johnson and Jillian Robbins.
This is the latest Sondheim work to be presented in New York. A revival of Sweeney Todd, starring Josh Groban and Annaleigh Ashford, is currently in previews at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre on Broadway. And the Off-Broadway production of Merrily We Roll Along, starring Daniel Radcliffe, Jonathan Groff and Lindsay Mendez, is scheduled to transfer to the Hudson Theatre on Broadway for an 18-week engagement starting Sept. 19.
The two productions follow a revival of Sondheim’s Into the Woods, which ran on Broadway from June 2022 through January 2023, and Company, which began previews before the theatrical shutdown and then returned to run from November 2021 through July 2022.