“Follies” executes a head-spinning leap after Act 1 (the original played without intermission) when the four principals — Sally, Phyllis, Buddy and Ben — are transported into a Ziegfeld (here called Weismann) Follies of the mind. They’re each given a number inspired by their psychic paralysis: Buddy sings about loving a woman who doesn’t love him; Phyllis, about an inability to reconcile her younger and older selves. It’s a daring, though less-than-perfect, segue from what comes before. Still, with excellent assists from costume designer Gregg Barnes and set designer Derek McLane, who wrap this artificial “Loveland” in sublimely ridiculous pulchritude, the four songs dazzlingly survey a landscape carpeted in discord and disappointment.
The sunny solidity of Schaeffer’s staging doesn’t quite prepare us for the cold ambiguity of the musical’s final moments. And yet, this “Follies” is a becoming mosaic, its pleasures amplified by the prodigious talent on display, up and down the rickety kick line.