SUU’s Theatre Program Honors Stephen Sondheim and His Timeless Musical, Into the Woods

Published: December 01, 2021 | Author: Ashley H Palmer | Read Time: 4 minutes

SUU students rehearse Into the WoodsStephen Sondheim’s passing over Thanksgiving weekend makes SUU Department of Theatre, Dance, and Arts Administration’s production of Into the Woods more timely than ever as we recognize the tremendous influence that Sondheim has on the musical theatre genre. Into the Woods is a story that combines several of the Brothers Grimm fairy tales and the outcome of what the characters’ choices bring to their stories, set in the Randall L. Jones Theatre on December 9, 10, 11, 2021 at 7:30 p.m. with a matinee on December 11, 2021 at 2:00 p.m. Tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for alumni with card, and $7 for youth. Audience members are given $2 off per ticket with the donation of a canned good to support the Iron County Care and Share. SUU faculty/staff (and one guest) and students can attend for free with a valid ID card. Tickets can be purchased at the America First Event Center Box Office, at the door the night of the performance, or online at

Lisa Quoresimo, Director of Into the Woods, shares, “We're thrilled to be back in the rehearsal room together and can't wait to put this magical show in front of a live audience. Into the Woods is entertaining, bright, and fun, but it also deals with communal loss and grief in a way that has been meaningful and moving for the cast as they recover from the losses of the last two years. We hope it will brighten and heal our whole community in the same way.”

First premiering in San Diego in 1986, Into the Woods won the hearts of many. Over the years the musical has been produced numerous times and was awarded multiple Tony Awards. Disney also released a movie of the musical in 2014 that was directed by Rob Marshall.

Matthew Bowden, a senior BFA Musical Theatre major from Salt Lake City, Utah, says, “Preparing to play the Baker has taught me a great deal about the massive emotional capacity that each of us possesses. No emotion exists as a singular entity; they are all intertwined. I think it's important for audiences to see this show because it intricately reflects the complexities of life and frames them in such a way that allows us to learn about our best and worst selves.”

Bowden continues, “My favorite part of working on this production has been the chance to be in a show written by the great Stephen Sondheim, who passed away just after Thanksgiving this year. His ability to transcribe emotion into every detail of his music is an immense gift. His score accomplishes so much by giving both actors and audiences exactly what they need to understand what the characters are experiencing.”

Parents bringing children should be aware that at the end of the first act everything seems to conclude with the fairytale “happily ever after”. It is a wonderful ending for children 11 years old and younger. The second act of the musical shows what happens to the fairytale characters after they get what they want. This act has more mature themes that reveal consequences of choices that they made.

Discover the lessons taught in Into the Woods on December 9, 10, 11, 2021 at 7:30 p.m. with a matinee on December 11, 2021 at 2:00 p.m. For more information about the Department of Theatre, Dance, and Arts Administration, please visit

About the College of Performing and Visual Arts

The College of Performing and Visual Arts (CPVA) at Southern Utah University comprises 26 academic programs including liberal arts (BA/BS) and professional (BFA, BM, BMEd) degrees in art, design, dance, music, and theatre. It includes graduate programs in the fields of arts administration (MFA, MA), music education (MME), and music technology (MM). More than 60 full-time faculty and staff are engaged in teaching and mentoring over 900 majors in the College. CPVA presents over 100 performances, lectures, presentations, and exhibitions each year and is affiliated with the Southern Utah Museum of Art (SUMA), Utah Shakespeare Festival, and the Center for Shakespeare Studies. Southern Utah University is an accredited member of the National Association of Schools of Art & Design (NASAD), National Association of Schools of Dance (NASD), National Association of Schools of Music (NASM), and the National Association of Schools of Theatre (NAST) making SUU the first public university in the state of Utah to be accredited by all four associations. For more information about the College of Performing and Visual Arts, visit

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