Video: Sweeney Todd’s Terfel & Thompson

Published March 30, 2015

As they prepare to bring Stephen Sondheim’s gory classic Sweeney Todd to the stage of the London Coliseum, we meet opera star Bryn Terfel and big screen queen Emma Thompson.

There are currently two musical destinations claiming to have the worst pies in London, and clearly neither of them have found the late night Croydon eateries I’ve stumbled into.

On Shaftesbury Avenue, in a pop-up pie shop, you’ll find an intimate version of Stephen Sondheim’s dark, gothic musical Sweeney Todd. It is, if you like, the miniature, perfectly-formed pie of the situation, the flavour of which would have The Great British Bake Off’s Paul Hollywood’s icy blue eyes twinkling.

At the London Coliseum is the grand, showstopper pie that would have Hollywood’s partner in crime Mary Berry dispensing with her reserved charm and swearing with delight at the sheer audacity of the creation. This is where Bryn Terfel and Emma Thompson can be found, playing the barbaric barber and his pastry-loving assistant.

While the pie shop version offers a tiny treat, the English National Opera offering is a thing of gargantuan scope. Terfel and Thompson are joined in the semi-staged production by an ensemble that reads like a who’s who of the West End and an entire onstage orchestra as they tell the macabre story of the horrific hairdresser driven by a lust for revenge.

Before the pair took to the stage, we caught up with them to discover more about the highly anticipated production.