I’ve been lucky enough to have played and conducted this show many times.
Like most Sondheim works, it takes a fairly high level of skill from vocalists and musicians to have a decent final product.
It’s not as relentless as Sweeney…but there are very few book scenes with just dialogue.
After having performed at regional, community, college and high school productions…
My thoughts are that the material is really better suited to those with very strong vocal and acting chops, but there is value to be gleaned at any level…
MTI.. what changed…sometimes licensing companies will revise shows and more often than not make the orchestration cleaner. In all the versions I had worked with prior…the arrangements were great.
Something changed…at first it appeared that there was a change due to the addition of Rapunzel & Witch’s “Our Little World”. I had come across this before and know that in past productions there was a desire to add this, but was not officially sanctioned.
It’s a nice addition and gives Rapunzel something meatier to sing.
Sadly…there were other changes made, most notably, the piano/part & PC score are significantly changed. I’d say even watered down. Some of the cross hand notation is archaic. There are a couple of pieces where the left hand has been engraved as treble clef and written several octaves below staff. I hope this is fixed.
Otherwise…it still remains one of the more enjoyable shows to conduct.