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Audra Meryl Christine Sondheim.png

Meryl Streep, Christine Baranski, Jake Gyllenhaal & More Join Forces to Celebrate Stephen Sondheim's 90th Birthday

By Kayleigh Donaldson | Celebrity | April 27, 2020 |

By Kayleigh Donaldson | Celebrity | April 27, 2020 |

Audra Meryl Christine Sondheim.png

Bless the theater kids of the world. Even as coronavirus has us all in lockdown, nothing’s going to stop them from singing from the rooftops, even if said rooftop is their living room via a Zoom recording. The stars of Broadway turned on their laptops yesterday for a mega internet celebration of the legendary composer Stephen Sondheim’s 90th birthday.

Take Me to the World was organized and hosted by Raúl Esparza, the Tony-nominated favorite of Broadway and Hannibal star who is also objectively the most handsome man alive. Despite some major technical snafus that had the event running super late, things eventually kicked off (with Esparza moving to Twitter to provide color commentary) and boy was it worth the wait.

Oh honey, where do we start?

How about real-life BFFs Ben Platt and Beanie Feldstein duetting to ‘It Takes Two’ from Into the Woods?

Jake Gyllenhaal — sporting some lovely long hair — reunited with Annaleigh Ashford for ‘Move On’ from Sunday in the Park with George. Cue ALL of my tears.

But wait, there’s more! Who better to sing ‘Ladies Who Lunch’ from Company than Meryl Streep, Christine Baranski, and Audra McDonald?! The triad of women who I would let run me over with a truck if it so pleased them!

Of course Lin-Manuel Miranda was there, and of course he was giddily live-tweeting along like the hype-man we all need and deserve during these dark times.

What, that’s not enough, you say? Well, how about Lea freaking Salonga?!

Neil Patrick Harris also performed the Witch’s Rap from Into the Woods and it was… okay, not great, but his kids were cute! (I couldn’t find a decent clip of it on Twitter so go to 12:47 on the YouTube video to hear what I mean.)

Of course, our wonderful host got to sing too. Not ‘Being Alive’, sadly, but hey, I have multiple videos of him doing that song to make me sob my heart out repeatedly. Instead, he went with a song from Evening Primrose because he’s all about those Sondheim deep cuts. That quarantine beard too…

His godson Iain Armitage — yes, his godson is young Sheldon — offered to help with the technical difficulties.

On top of celebrating the birthday of the greatest musical composer born on March 22nd (sorry not sorry, Lloyd Webber), Take Me to the World helped to raise funds for ASTEP (Artists Striving to End Poverty) so please donate if you can.

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Kayleigh is a features writer for Pajiba. You can follow her on Twitter or listen to her podcast, The Hollywood Read.

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