Randy Newman lead a one-night-only performance of his famed 1995 musical “Faust” in concert at New York City Center on July 1, 2014, as part of the Encores! Off-Center series. Here is a short highlight clip from that performance.
The musical is “like Goethe’s Faust Pt. 1, but more complex psychologically; more like Pt 2 but not the product of an ordered mind,” says Newman. “The Lord and the Devil are childhood friends who in adulthood have a falling out. The Devil is expelled from Heaven, somewhat arbitrarily some might say, and though he reigns in Hell, he longs to return to his childhood home. He goes up to visit Heaven for the first time in a long while. He finds the Lord and tells him Man is bad, and should never have been created. The Lord says that He doesn’t make mistakes. As they did in the 12th, 14th and 16th centuries, they bet on it, pick a young Notre Dame Freshman as a representative specimen and hilarity ensues.”
Faust opened in 1995 at the La Jolla Playhouse in San Diego and was revived at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago in 1996.