CST Associate Artistic Director Gary Griffin stages Sondheim's rhapsodic tour de force about the obsessive nature of power, beauty and love. Griffin’s inspired work includes Broadway’s Tony Award-nominated The Color Purple, Olivier Award-winning Pacific Overtures, and CST’s critically acclaimed productions of A Little Night Music and Sunday in the Park with George.
Approximate Running Time: 90 minutes (no intermission)
"Excellent performances! A lovely production, delicate and tuneful, staged with a great deal of polish."
"Highly Recommended! Passion, a musical that cries out for a boutique production, has been given a first-rate one here."
– Chicago Sun-Times
"Gasteyer’s rich, consuming and powerfully affecting performance feels both fresh and off-beat in that revisionish fashion that we associate with Griffin’s best work."
– Chicago Tribune
"Director Gary Griffin has been heralded as one of Sondheim’s foremost interpreters. His masterful staging on CST’s upstairs stage confirms his reputation."
– Daily Herald
Programming Upstairs at Chicago Shakespeare is made possible through generous support from Hyatt Hotels Corporation.
Passion is is presented in The Carl and Marilynn Thoma Theater.
Passion is an extraordinary musical that exposes romantic love as a life-affirming force that can also destroy us. With music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim and a book by long-time collaborator James Lapine, Passion tells the story of Giorgio, a young soldier having a love affair with beautiful, sensual and married Clara. Sent to a remote outpost, he becomes the obsession of Fosca, unattractive, brooding, and inappropriate. Giorgio experiences love in its full complexity, and his emotional awakening dooms him as it ennobles him.
Dark and disturbing adoration is familiar territory to fans of Sondheim's work, whose 50 year Broadway career is highlighted by hits Into the Woods, Company, Sunday in the Park with George, Sweeney Todd and A Little Night Music, which produced his biggest hit song, "Send in the Clowns." Sondheim's unique position in American musical theater is based on the complexity of his music and the depth of his lyrics and ideas. Rather than the usual easy romantic stories, Sondheim's mature and shaded work interlocks love, beauty, and obsession. Passion does not provide easy answers, but ambivalent explorations about the redemptive and destructive powers of love.
See who’s who among the actors, with their bios, headshots and resumes.
The Creative Team
See who’s who on the creative team—the director, designers and other artists who contribute to the creation of the world of the play.