Prepare ye for the timeless tale of friendship, loyalty and love
Venice Theatre Summer Stock offers fresh look at the musical Godspell July 23-Aug. 9
(Venice, FL) Venice Theatre’s Summer Stock program (a “boot camp” for students interested in pursuing professional theatre careers) will present its 9th annual musical: the 2012 Broadway revival version of Godspell. The show opens on the theatre’s MainStage Thursday, July 23 and runs through Sunday, Aug. 9, 2015. Performances are Thursdays through Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. Tickets are $25 for adults, $15 for college students and $13 for students through 12th grade. They are on sale now at VeniceStage.com; by calling 941-488-1115; or in person at the box office located at 140 W. Tampa Ave. in Venice. Summer box office hours are Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and one hour before show time. This production is generously sponsored by Boone, Boone, Boone, & Koda P.A.
Based primarily on the gospel of Matthew and presented with acrobatics, improvisation and theatrical flair, Godspell has entertained millions for more than 40 years. It was the first major musical theatre offering from multiple Grammy, Drama Desk and Academy Award winner Stephen Schwartz (Wicked, Pippin, Pocahontas). The Wall Street Journal called Godspell, “A family-friendly show that deserves to run forever!” It has run in various incarnations for many years, opening off-Broadway in 1971 where it ran through 1976 and then moved to Broadway where it continued through 1977. A popular film adaptation was released in 1973. In 2000, it was revived off-Broadway for a short run, but the more successful revival – which Venice Theatre will present – was the recent 2011-2012 production on Broadway at the Circle in the Square Theater.
This revival is a masterful retelling of the original sensation, injected with contemporary references and updated arrangements of familiar tunes including “Day by Day,” “It’s All for the Best,” “Turn Back, Oh Man,” and “All Good Gifts.” Billboard Magazine has said, “Godspell turns the theatre into a joyous palace,” and Women’s Wear Daily raved, “Godspell is a love feast…dedicated to light and joy and love.” Theatre goers and record buyers have agreed. “Day by Day” became a well-recognized single that spent 14 weeks on the Billboard Hot 100, peaking at #13, and the original cast album was gold certified.
Brad Wages directs and choreographs Venice Theatre’s student performers while Michelle Kasanofsky provides musical direction. Wages, who is known for his creative stage interpretations, has added his own flair to the revival, setting the scene for Jesus’ parables, last supper, and crucifixion in an abandoned amusement park. Wages says that Godspell was originally written in the style of “poverty theatre” which required little costuming or set design. “While I understand the appeal and reason for that approach, he explains, “I’m excited about John Andzulis’ set design and Chelsea Sorensen’s costumes. The dynamic production values will help audiences see this familiar show with new eyes.” Andzulis’ set, which is built by theatre volunteers, includes an impressive Ferris wheel among other elements sure to dazzle the senses.
Again, tickets for Godspell are available now at VeniceStage.com; by calling 941-488-1115; or in person at the box office located at 140 W. Tampa Ave. in Venice. Also on sale are season subscriptions and single tickets for the 3rd Annual Summer Cabaret Festival, the doo-wop group THE GOLDTONES, and Hair directed by Ben Vereen. Single tickets for the entire 2015-2016 season go on sale July 1, 2015.
Book by John Michael Tebelak; Music and New Lyrics by Stephen Schwartz
Conceived and Originally Directed by John Michael Tebelak
Based on The Gospel According to St. Matthew
Director/Choreographer: Brad Wages
Musical Director: Michelle Kasanofsky
Stage Manager: Lisa Million
Assistant Stage Manager: Blake Billington
Technical Director/Scenic and Lighting Designer: John Michael Andzulis
Costume Designer: Chelsea Sorensen
Sound Designer: Jaclyn Ledoux
Jesus: Zach Herman
Judas: Jacob Osborn
John the Baptist: Stephen Emery
Company: Megan Bartek, Makenzie Callahan, Allie Campbell, DaNiesha Carr, Charlotte Crowley, Melyssa Dawson, Teri DeNiro, Ben Dubin, Samuel Echevarria, Jr., Morgan Graves, Shawn Harding, Allison Pickens, Anna Sand-Lambert, Kaitlyn Terpstra, Cleo Warn
140 W. Tampa Ave
Venice, FL 34285
TICKETS: 941-488-1115 | www.venicestage.com
Venice Theatre is a 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to making a dramatic impact on all stages of life. The second-largest of 10,000 community theatres in the United States, it is located at 140 W. Tampa Ave. in Venice, FL. Its MainStage offers seating for 432 patrons and features musicals, plays, concerts and special events. Its Yvonne Pinkerton Theatre seats 90 patrons and is home to the theatre’s “Generations,” Stage II and Cabaret Series. In addition to providing entertainment to the community, Venice Theatre offers a wide range of education and outreach programs for children and adults.