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    Performances of "Godspell" are on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays through July 23 at Anne Arundel Community College in Arnold.

Pasadena Theatre Company Brings Back “Godspell”

Sharon Mager
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July 12, 2017

Drawn from the Gospel of Matthew, “Godspell” retells the parables and teachings of Jesus, but, as Pasadena Theatre Company artistic director Chuck Dick said, PTC adds a modern twist when it presents the summer musical, which opened on Friday, July 7, in the Humanities Recital Hall at Anne Arundel Community College in Arnold.

“We’ve done the show several times before and it’s always been very popular,” Dick said. “It seems there’s always something fresh about the show, and that’s because of the dynamics of the actors.

“And there’s room for comedy,” Dick added, stressing that the overall message stays the same, focusing on people loving one another.

The humor in PTC’s “Godspell” is abounding. When the prodigal son returns home, there’s a celebration to Kool and the Gang’s “Celebrate!” When men are working in the field, the cast does a quick version of “Chain Gang.” There’s also a short version of “Nine to Five.”

Purists can rest assured knowing that other popular songs are included — “Day by Day,” “We Beseech Thee” and “All for the Best” — because they are beloved by audiences and actors alike.

“I love that the updated version includes ‘Beautiful City,’” said John Rose, who will don the classic Superman shirt for the role of Jesus. “I’m glad they incorporated that into the stage production, and I love the feeling it brings. It builds community on the stage.”

Rose was cast as Jesus 18 years ago in the company’s first production of “Godspell.” Since that time, Rose has been in a variety of Maryland dinner theater productions.

He is joined in the cast by Frank Antonio as John the Baptist and Judas, and Christy Stouffer, Claire Edwards, Cristina Shunk, Joe Rose, Lindsey Miller, Lorelei Jennifer Kahn, Paul Ballard and R. Brett Rohrer.

The production crew includes Chuck Dick along with executive producer Sharon Steele, music director Tom Jackson, choreographer Jason Kimmel and assistant director Christy Stouffer. The pit band includes Tom Jackson, Elaine Beckman, Adruma “AJ” Victoria and Tom Delaney.

Dick said the performance is timely. “There’s so much bickering today and political battles … and other terrible things,” he said. “‘Godspell’ has a very uplifting message in terms of human relationships, caring about other people and about love. It’s a great message about how we should treat and care about each other. It’s an important value in today’s world. We like the message of the show … it’s encouraging.”

Performances are on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays through July 23. On Fridays and Saturdays, performances will begin at 8:00pm. On Sundays, the show will start at 3:00pm. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit www.ptcshows.com.

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