Trinity University Main Stage presents “Company”

Musical explores adult relationships and pays tribute to the late Stephen Sondheim


Ashley Allen

Playbill from Trinity University’s production of “Company”

Featuring music performed by a live orchestra on stage, the departments of Music, Human Communication and Theatre bring together talented students and staff for Trinity University’s biannual Main Stage musical production, “Company.”

With music and lyrics written by Stephen Sondheim, book written by George Furth and originally produced and directed on Broadway by Harold Prince, “Company” is running from April 1–9 in the Stieren Theater, located in the Ruth Taylor Theater Building.

“Company” features a cast made up of 14 talented students studying a variety of disciplines and is directed by Nathan Stith, assistant professor of human communication and theatre, with musical direction by James Worman, associate professor of music.

The musical, uniquely organized in a non-linear narrative, tracks the main character Robert, played by Andrew Walker, junior political science and sociology major and theatre minor. The audience peers into Robert’s life on his 35th birthday as he explores the relationships he has with a few married couples and his multiple girlfriends.

Walker said that although his character is a middle-aged man, relationships formed in college are very similar to those played out onstage in “Company.”

“I have learned a lot about myself through playing this part,” Walker said. “The show is this love letter sent to friends and to partners and to loved ones. It has been really motivating and powerful for me and can impact college students and people in general.”

Sondheim, an American composer and lyricist who was perhaps one of the most important figures of 20th-century musical theatre, died in late November of 2021. Junior Seiler Nishimura, religion major and Arts, Letters and Enterprise and theatre minor, plays the character of Joanne. Nishimura said that a lot of students participating in Trinity’s rendition of “Company” are fans of Sondheim and wanted to honor him in this production.

Walker said that when “Company” was chosen as the musical and afterward during the audition process, students and faculty couldn’t have predicted the show’s future significance.

“It is an honor to be able to do this show, and it feels something like a thank you [to Sondheim] for the amazing work [he] put into the musical theater world,” Walker said.

Additionally, Scarlett Patino, senior theatre and business double major and the Production Stage Manager for “Company,” said that the recent death of Sondheim added a certain kind of pressure to the performance.

“I would say, in a very positive way, there is added pressure to do justice to the musical. Sondheim is known for having complex music and multiple different kinds of songs in his shows. Our approach to ‘Company’ definitely took into account the factor of Sondheim’s recent death,” Patino said.

The show opened on April 1 at 8 p.m. with a sold-out audience. Patino said that she had not seen a musical sell out like that during her entire time at Trinity.

The remaining show dates include 8 p.m. performances on April 8 and 9. Admission is free, and tickets can be reserved by visiting @tumainstage on Instagram or by visiting Trinity Theatre on Facebook.