Sweeney Todd: Adaptation Across Media & Time

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Name: Jack Williams
Major: Communication Studies
Minors: Music and Global Media & Digital Studies
Advisors: Dr. Oscar Mejia and Dr. Ahmet Atay

The character of Sweeney Todd has remained relevant for over a century and has been portrayed within a diverse array of storytelling platforms such as novels, plays, and musicals. The question is why has the narrative compelled so many generations throughout the years? In what ways have adaptational practices been utilized to translate the text from one medium to another, and how have the societal themes contained in the story continued to fascinate audiences? The media analyses include literature, theatre and film while the themes discussed are predominantly class and mental illness. Media studies and critical/cultural studies have been applied to this research topic to unpack the basis of this story’s significance across time and media. The results assert that the dark characterization within the story is paramount to its narrative intrigue, and that each platform of storytelling offers a unique level of accessibility to its audience.

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Posted in Comments Enabled, Independent Study, Symposium 2022 on April 26, 2022.

2 responses to “Sweeney Todd: Adaptation Across Media & Time”

  1. Dante King says:

    Hey Jack! Congratulations!! This is so cool. I’m a big fan of Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd (and Sondheim in general!), so I’m loving this, haha. Thanks so much for sharing! Could you see yourself continuing your research with other Sondheim musicals, and if so, which would you want to tackle next?

  2. Nat Seeley Jr. says:

    Nice work and interesting stuff! I haven’t heard about Sweeney Todd before so it’s cool to learn something new! I’ll keep an eye out for renditions of it now. Thanks!

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Earn a bachelor of arts in music or a bachelor of music in either music performance or music composition

Major Minor

Global Media & Digital Studies

Digital technology, mass media and film studies are part of a dynamic, interdisciplinary course of study

Major Minor

Communication Studies

Be an effective listener, writer, and speaker who can think critically and connect with audiences

Major Minor

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