Winnipeg Studio Theatre presents Godspell - page 6

a and I went to lunch at Stella’s and
began to talk about putting a piece in the Fringe Festival. We had had a lot of
success at the Fringe in 2010 with
[title of show]
, and we were both longing
to do something creative and collaborative. We discussed a lot of different
shows that day, but kept coming back to
. The original idea was to re-
orchestrate the show to have the cast play as many instruments as possible
(backed up by a very small band), and to stage it in a non-traditional location.
I knew we would need permission for that scale of music re-orchestration, so
that night I sent Stephen Schwartz an email directly, describing our project
and asking whether we had his blessing to go ahead. To my surprise, his
representative got back to me within a couple days saying that Schwartz said,
“go for it”.
Since then, this project has gone through many changes in order to get to the
July 16th opening. We partnered with Kayla Gordon and Winnipeg Studio
Theatre, who have shown an incredible amount of support and trust throughout
this process. The show was nearly cancelled when our chosen non-traditional
location fell through at the last second and we were fortunate to be able to
secure PTE (thanks largely to hard work from Kayla, Ali Fulmyk, and Cherry at
PTE). The orchestrations themselves went through several different iterations
as we figured out what skills our wonderful cast had to offer. Overall, it’s been
an incredible journey with Tat, Ali, Kayla and everyone else who has helped
us at various points along the way. I’m so thrilled with the organic way this
show has grown and the way the cast has embraced our ideas and made them
happen in a way that feels natural and joyful.
I had planned on talking about the logic behind our musical concept on the
show; about how having the cast play instruments that would traditionally be
found in an elementary school music room highlights the theme of Jesus as
teacher and the disciples as students. However, hopefully all of that and more
will be apparent when you see the show. In place of that, I just want to say
enjoy the show and spread the love!
Paul DeGurse
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