Popular songs that make the stage come alive

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Aug 2014 Popular songs that make the stage come alive


By Leslie Dunn


I first saw Godspell in the early 70s when a 23-year-old actor called David Essex played the part of Jesus and I loved it.


I wasn’t sure if putting it on in 2014 would work but how wrong I was. It was truly amazing. Coming from the ‘Hippie’ culture of the late 60s, it became one of the most popular shows in the 70s, and has had thousands of productions from the West End to Broad­way. This particular staging had the audi­ence filled with songs from way back in their memories.


The show transforms parables into sto­ries using the famous songs and I believed every character. The 10 actors of the cut-to-the-chase professional resident compa­ny at the Queens Theatre, Hornchurch, played all the instruments live on stage and brought this thrilling musical bang up to date.


The upbeat numbers such as Prepare Ye (The Way of the Lord), Learn your Lessons Well and Light of the World filled the audito­rium with approval, and the quieter ones were very appealing too, especially the well known Day by Day sung beautifully by Ellie Rose Boswell and the simplicity of By My Side, sung equally as beautifully by Megan Leigh Mason.


With other famous hits from the 70s, Save The People and We Beseech Thee sung brilliantly by this exuberant cast, this show had everything we could have asked for.


The multi talented ensemble each sang a number and had the packed audience on its feet during the finale. The songs may have been on the back burner for a long time but they were soon brought to life again during this magical musical.


Godspell was originally directed and conceived by John-Michael Tebak, with music and new lyrics by Stephen Schwartz.


At the Queens Theatre, it was brilliantly directed by Matt Devitt.


The brilliant cast is Sam Kordbacheh as Jesus, Sean Needham as John/Judas Patrick Burdbridge, Georgina Field, Debo­rah Hewitt, Callum Hughes, Sam Pay, Sarah Scowen, Ellie Rose Boswell, and Megan Leigh Mason.

Lesley Dunn