Described by Eileen Barrett.
The exhilarating musical by the award-winning composer of WICKED, Stephen Schwartz.
Godspell was the first musical I ever attended. Waaaay back in 1972, my sister took me to what has become Toronto’s legendary production that featured soon-to-be-stars Andrea Martin, Gilda Radner, Martin Short and Eugene Levy. The musical director was Paul Shaffer. In this exciting new interpretation of an old favourite, director Sara-Jeanne Hosie has cast a woman, Jennifer Copping, in the role of Jesus.
“When I set out to cast this piece I did not have a specific gender, age, or race in mind for any of these roles—particularly Jesus,” said Hosie. “From the moment Jennifer Copping walked in the room, there was an immediate feeling that we would follow her. Jesus as a woman breaks the mold, allowing us to tell a fresh story. If you replace the word ‘God’ with the word ‘love’ then the true message of this piece comes through. So, when will love save the people?” -Sara-Jeanne Hosie
“Godspell first surfaced Off-Broadway in the early seventies. Loosely based on the Gospel of Matthew it’s interspersed with anthemic songs with spirited melodies… After four and a half decades Godspell can still hold its own [delivering] its message of kindness, brotherly (and sisterly) love and tolerance.” –Review Vancouver
“For this two-and-a-half hour production, the actors not only sing, dance, and act like sheep and goats (it’s a parable), but also play instruments. As a result, Schwartz’s enduring melodies — in songs like Day By Day, Beautiful City, Light of the World — shine. These are uplifting moments, exuberantly performed.” –Vancouver Sun
“The voices – solo and ensemble – are terrific; the choreography is energetic and smart; Alan Brodie’s set and light design are great; and the story, of course, is timeless; John the Baptist, played by twelve-year old Aubrey Joy Maddock – her blonde curls bobbing – introduces a motley crew of transients to Jesus. Over the course of a couple of hours, this group of young men and women, become Jesus’s disciples as she instructs them by way of parables: “Let he who is without fault cast the first stone.” “Love thy neighbor as thyself.” “Don’t be overcome by evil but overcome evil with love.” The music and songs are wonderful.” –Jo Ledingham
“The good news—and it is very good news—is that the cast is insanely talented. And, as this production’s female Jesus, Jennifer Copping, who is a phenomenal dramatic actor, proves to Vancouver that she’s also a show-biz gal. It’s worth noting that the most successful moments in this Godspell are also its simplest.” –The Georgia Straight
Scenes from the show (video)
Sing along with the original Broadway cast recording of “Day by Day” (video)