Musical power in Loft’s Godspell

Chris Gilbey-Smith as Jesus along with other cast members
Chris Gilbey-Smith as Jesus along with other cast members

The Loft Theatre is bringing a high-octane production of the 1970s Biblical rock musical Godspell to the stage in Leamington.

With music and lyrics by Stephen Schwartz, whose latest offering Wicked continues to wow audiences in the West End, the show opened off Broadway in 1971 and ran for over 2600 performances.

It proved equally successful when it opened in London, launching the career of David Essex who was chosen from 2,000 candidates for the role of Jesus.

More than 40 years after its premiere, the music and message of Godspell have lost none of their energy or power. It is based St Matthew’s Gospel, but is no traditional re-telling of the bible story, instead offering a joyful celebration of scenes from the life of Christ and re-enactment of some of his most famous parables interspersed with memorable musical numbers, including Day by Day, All Good Gifts and All For The Best.

Director Tim Willis, musical director Matt Flint and choreographer Robin Stokoe have brought together an ensemble cast of talented players. They include Chris Gilbey-Smith as Jesus and Pete Bucknall in the dual role of John the Baptist and Judas.

Tim said: “To bring this wonderful show to life has required a strong cast, and I am privileged to have been able to assemble a team that features well-known names from the local circuit as well as some new faces making their Loft debuts.

“Many of us have worked together before and hopefully this will shine through as we bring this magical musical to the stage.’

Godspell runs at The Loft Theatre, Victoria Colonnade, Leamington Spa from Wednesday July 8 to Saturday July 18, with a performance each evening at 7.30pm (except Sunday). Full-price tickets cost £13.50 on weekdays and £15 on Saturdays.

Tickets can be booked online at any time via the Loft Theatre Company website (www.loft-theatre.co.uk), or by calling 0844 493 4938 between 9am and 5pm Monday to Friday.

The box office will be open on Monday July 6 and Tuesday July 7 between 7pm and 8.30pm and on each performance evening.