Stage Right spreads the gospel of music with 'Godspell'
It's not always the adults who are the teachers.
In Stage Right's production of the Broadway musical “Godspell,” director Anthony Marino says it's the youngest performers who spread the word of Jesus to the older doubters and nonbelievers.
The cast is a mix of adult professional actors and Stage Right graduates, a group of teens and current Stage Right students, pre-teens who serve as an angel chorus and children who are taught by Jesus (David Mahokey) and share his message with the others.
“Godspell” is based on the Gospel of Matthew and was first performed at Carnegie Mellon University, where a former student, John Michael Tebelak, had created it as his master's thesis. The show played at a small club in New York before it opened off-Broadway and moved to the Broadway stage, with a new musical score written by Stephen Schwartz.
It's a favorite musical of Marino, who first performed it in his 20s at Pittsburgh Musical Theater with director Ken Gargaro and has done it eight times since. The last time “Godspell” was produced at Stage Right was in 2001. The musical features the parables based on the Gospel and set to contemporary music.
“For this production, we had added some elements that make the message come to life,” Marino says. “Our Jesus, David Mahokey, is a cancer survivor who still wears a leg brace. We're using that within the story, of Jesus humbling himself and accepting what he is and who he is and giving us that lesson, weaknesses and all.”
Mahokey, a graduate of Point Park University who was the composer for Stage Right's adaptation of “Snow White” last season, says that playing Jesus in “Godspell” is a dream come true.
“I've never looked forward so much to a role,” he says.
Several of the actors on stage will be playing instruments in the show, according to Marino, including Mahokey, who plays guitar and sings. The score includes the popular song “Day by Day” and a cast favorite, “All Good Gifts.”
Other featured performers include Renata Marino, who also serves as choreographer; Joe Pedulla, Alyssa Zagorac, Vince Tresco, Rachael Tresco, Kiley Caughey, Greg Kerestan, Jeanne Kane and Dennis Jerz. Eric Barchiesi is the musical director.
Candy Williams is a contributing writer for Trib Total Media.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Big plays cost Steelers defense in preseason loss at Bills
- Pitt star running back Conner remains grounded despite success
- Steelers notebook: Tomlin mum on Bryant suspension
- Rossi: Beleaguered Steelers need MVP from Big Ben
- Happ’s strong start, Ramirez’s homer pace Pirates past Rockies
- Pirates notebook: Hurdle’s faith in Polanco pays off
- Architecture: Pittsburgh history in 10 houses
- College football preview: ACC
- Pennsylvania welfare employees targeted in crackdown
- Jeannette’s emergency responders give back
- Unlike during his time at Florida, Ohio State’s Meyer learning to enjoy his success