Momentum Performing Arts
"...a colourful, all-singing-dancing delight."
Godspell, based on the book by John-Michael Tebelak with words and music by Stephen Schwartz, is performed at the Garrick this week by the Momentum Performing Arts group, working in association with South Staffordshire College. It’s a musical about the Gospel according to St. Matthew and has been performed successfully since first curtain up on Broadway in 1971 where it broke new ground in its portrayal of dramatised teachings and Jesus’s last days. Vaudeville-styled, the show includes many musical genres including rock, R&B and ragtime and flows with rapidly-fired sequences of well-known parables. It’s a wacky interpretation of one of humanities greatest historical events and a compelling tale of friendship, loyalty, forgiveness and love.
Directed by award-winning director Craig Sanders, this fast-paced production is bursting with energy, fun and enthusiasm, delivered by a young cast who have clearly worked hard to achieve a colourful, all-singing-dancing delight.
The stand-out star is Jesus, played by Jordan Connelly, an actor of great charisma and ability, but this is truly a full cast effort with strong support roles by Eric Hastilow as John the Baptist/Judas, Jamie Jones as Jeffrey, Daniel Roberts as Lamar, Will Allman as Herb, Rachel Newton as Robin, Leah Yates as Joanne, Abbie Mead as Peggy, Sadie Derbyshire as Sonia and Hannah Walton as Gilmer. The show is supported by a lively and competent ensemble - Alex Rozwalka Attebery, Craig Pitt, Emma Percival, Gabba Jones, Jake Rochell, Sharna Hind Friend and Yasmin Lefevre.
Well designed choreography by Helen Thom proves that you can successfully pack big moves into a small space and the production team as a whole ensures that poignant scenes flow at the perfect pace, comedy scenes are executed with perfect timing and powerful scenes are performed with just the right amount of righteousness.
Featuring hit songs Day by Day, By My Side, Save The People and All For The Best the show is musically directed by Angharad Sanders on 1st keys assisted by Kyra Povey and Kyle Allen. Daniel Roberts plays confidently on acoustic guitar and ukulele, accompanied by fellow characters on bongos, blues harp and kazoo. Some beautiful harmonies and nice wide vocal ranges carry the songs along effortlessly and the show features some quirky lighting, a commendable set design and is well costumed throughout.
Friendship, camaraderie and celebration oozes from this cast and I congratulate them all not only on their individual performances but also for achieving a group personality that perfectly delivers this joyous and entertaining production. Amen.
Runs to 11th May
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