“Godspell” Cast and Crew Bring the Stories of the Bible to Life

By Elizabeth Witek, Staff Writer

Starting in December, the Queen’s Court Company devoted four months and countless hours to rehearsing for the spring musical Godspell that boasted sell-out crowds at its four shows from April 14-16. In addition to the 32 cast members, the production was made possible by the work of one student assistant director; one student musician; a crew of a dozen students who worked on the set and stage, lighting, tech, costumes and choreography; and several faculty members.

Director Ellen Phillips and musical director Andrew Bogdan were the masterminds behind the production. Through their guidance, the students expressed not only themselves but much of what they had learned from their music and drama classes as well.

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Cast members from Godspell surround Grace M. (center) who starred as Jesus. Photo by Melissa Whelan

Bogdan was amazed by what the students accomplished due to their varying musical backgrounds. “The moment that I will remember the most would be when the whole cast got through the finale in four part harmony for the first time. By the looks on their faces, none of them could believe that they had just sung that.”

In the end, their hard work and progress was evident, as audience members raved about the performance. “It was like Godspell for the digital age! The students really adapted the story to be Trinity Hall-esque.” said STEM teacher Kevin Polke, who has been in several Godspell productions himself.

“Overall, the show was amazing,” freshman Colleen Cusat said. “My favorite part was  the number ‘We Beseech Thee’ because it made the whole audience feel like they were connected in the show.”

That connection with the audience stemmed from the passion the actors showed in each performance, a passion that was cultivated through their shared experiences in preparing for the production.

“This show was special because it brought the entire company together as a family,” said junior Sarah Frankel, who played Jesus in two of the four performances. “The show pushed us to work together and it created an amazing story. There were so many moments I will never forget.”

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The Company joins together to perform “Bless the Lord My Soul” in the first act of Godspell. Photo by Melissa Whelan

Junior Grace Molloy, who played Jesus in the other two shows, also voiced an appreciation for all of the people involved in making Godspell a success. “At the end of the last show, I took a moment to look around at my fellow cast members and the directors. I appreciated all of them and the amazing times we shared and the wonderful show we put on.”

“My faith is definitely a big part of my life, so taking on this show was so close to my heart,” said Phillips about selecting the play for this year’s spring musical. Phillips said she especially enjoyed connecting the students to Godspell by setting the musical at present-day Trinity Hall.

As sophomore cast member Joanna Ferrer attests, the students involved in the Godspell production grew artistically and spiritually. “I have truly discovered a passion for theatre and connected with my faith, and I never thought that would happen the way it did,” she said. “This show was an amazing experience I’ll never ever forget.”

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