"SUNDAY IN THE PARK WITH GEORGE," Monday, 8-10:30 p.m. (50); 9-11:30 p.m. (28)--Stephen Sondheim's 1985 Pulitzer Prize-winning musical (illustrated on the cover) finally will reach a Southern California stage this fall so that the public here can see it as it was designed. In the meantime, thank goodness for television.
It's not the same as seeing it live, but it sure beats not seeing it at all. Or waiting 2 1/2 years to see a road company version or a local production such as the one that the Long Beach Civic Light Opera is planning to unveil Oct. 18.
Bernadette Peters and Mandy Patinkin reprised their starring roles in the original Broadway play for this specially staged TV production, which was seen on the Showtime cable channel earlier this year and now closes out the fifth season of PBS' "American Playhouse."
With music and lyrics by the incomparable Sondheim ("A Little Night Music," "Follies," "Company") and a book by James Lapine, "Sunday in the Park With George" was inspired by the 1886 painting "A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte," by Frenchman Georges Seurat.