He began as an urban legend in early 19th-century London. In 1846, he starred in a story that was published in installments over 18 weeks. Then, he got a mention from Charles Dickens and appeared in a French novel before crossing over to theater, opera and film.
Sweeney Todd, a fictional barber who murders clients before a baker cooks their flesh into meat pies, has inspired countless drama productions over the past 200 years. Some of the best were operas featuring music by Stephen Sondheim that the New York Philharmonic put together in 2014 with Emma Thompson and Bryn Terfel as the stars.
On Aug. 4, a film of one of these performances will screen outdoors at 8 p.m. on Flushing Meadows Corona Park’s Festival Lawn, thanks to a new month-long partnership between Queens Theatre and Lincoln Center Education. Video versions of other great Lincoln Center works will then screen on the remaining Tuesdays in August. (In case of rain, the show will go on inside Queens Theatre.)
On Aug. 11, footage from a concert by the Villalobos Brothers will be shown. This group, which hails from Mexico, mixes indigenous rhythms with jazz harmonies and classic music. These World Music pioneers impressed Lincoln Center brass so much that they returned for an encore presentation in 2014.
Video of a gala performance featuring cellist Yo-Yo Ma with the New York Philharmonic and conductor Alan Gilbert will screen on Aug. 18. Then, the fun will end on Aug. 25 with the 2012 Richard Tucker Opera Gala. In this film, singers such as Dmitri Hvorostovsky, Olga Borodina and Marcello Giordani belt out some of the most iconic operas in their repertoire, including “La Traviata” and “The Barber of Seville.”