March 2022 at Musical Cyberspace is all about songs with people’s names in the title.
“In Buddy’s Eyes” is one of the most poignant songs in Stephen Sondheim and James Goldman’s Follies. On the surface, the song is about a woman who loves the way her husband sees her after many years of marriage. But this is a song by Sondheim, which means there’s more to it. Sally is actually more concerned with how Ben sees her than Buddy. Ben, who she has obsessively loved her whole life, is the reason she has come to the Follies reunion and it is by reminding Ben of the Sally she was so long ago that she hopes to win him back. Tragedy waits in the wings…
There are many fantastic performances of this song from productions and concerts. There would likely be a strong contingency of fans who name Barbara Cook’s rendition as the best of the bunch. For me, that’s fine if you’re looking for a performance of the song by Barbara Cook, which is what you get even in her rendition of the song in Follies in Concert. For a performance of the song as Sally, it is Dorothy Collins who sets the bar. Some have come close to that remarkable interpretation of the entire role, but Collins trumps them all every time.
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