Composer Stephen Schwartz (“Pippin,” “Wicked”) and librettist John-Michael Tebelak’s classic 1971 musical “Godspell” continues through Feb. 12 at La Comedia Dinner Theatre in Springboro.
This charming biblical look at the parables of Jesus Christ is told through humor and heart, particularly conceived to spotlight the imaginative, storytelling strengths of its ensemble.
Credit: JUSTIN WALTON
Credit: JUSTIN WALTON
Directed and choreographed by Chris Beiser, the cast is led by Montana Iverson of Springboro as Jesus. Iverson, currently attending Wright State University and a member of the rock band Bohemian Funk, has been involved in local community theater for over a decade, including shows with Town Hall Theatre in Centerville and Beavercreek Community Theatre. Desmond Thomas, who has appeared in numerous La Comedia productions including “Elf: The Musical” and “Mamma Mia!,” co-stars as John the Baptist and Judas.
The cast includes Hannah Brown, Allison Gabert, Becky Iverson, Ed Iverson, Dylan Jackson, Bridget Lorenz, Karie-Lee Sutherland, and Averi Turner.
“We haven’t produced ‘Godpsell’ since the early 2000s, so we’re excited to do it again,” said Joe Adkins, La Comedia owner and producer. “‘Godspell’ went very well for us the last time. We knew we wanted to do a popular show but also a show that we haven’t done in a while. We felt it was time to reintroduce the show to our audiences.”
Schwartz’s delightfully tuneful score includes the bright and sprightly “Prepare Ye the Way of the Lord,” “All for the Best,” “Light of the World” and “We Beseech Thee” along with the lovely, reflective “Day By Day,” “All Good Gifts,” “Beautiful City” and “On the Willows.” La Comedia is notably staging the 2011 Broadway revival of “Godspell” which updated the musical arrangements for a more contemporary feel.
The remainder of La Comedia’s 2022 season includes “Phantom” (Feb. 17-Apr. 3), “The Music Man” (Apr. 7-May 22), “Disney’s Beauty and the Beast” (June 2-July 24), “West Side Story” (July 28-Sept. 11), “Do Black Patent Leather Shows Really Reflect Up? (Sept. 15-Oct. 30) and “Irving Berlin’s White Christmas” (Nov. 3-Dec. 31). The lineup is dubbed “The Magnificent 7″ because it contains some of the most popular shows in the venue’s history.
As the organization looks to the year ahead, Adkins is grateful for the community support allowing its doors to remain open in spite of pandemic difficulties.
“We want to thank everybody for sticking with us these past 47 years but especially these last two years,” he said. “We’re doing everything as safely as possible that we can for everybody’s health but we’re here because people want to see live theater.”
HOW TO GO
Where: La Comedia Dinner Theatre, 765 W. Central Ave., Springboro
When: Through Feb. 12; Thursday and Friday matinee and evening, Saturday evening, and Sunday brunch and evening
Tickets: 937-746-4554 or lacomedia.com
About the Author