The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Jesus’ story retold in upcoming musical

The cast of NW theater’s newest production perform a musical number during rehearsals. Emmanuel Colon-Nieves (center) will play the role of Jesus in this biblical retelling. The musical will feature live music from a professional band.
Photo by Joseph Serrata/The Collegian

By Gunner Young/campus editor

The NW Campus theater program will perform the musical “Godspell” beginning Oct. 2, complete with a full cast and a live band.

“Godspell” was conceived and originally directed by John-Michael Tebelak, and the music and lyrics were written by Stephen Schwartz.

“The play is based on the gospel of St. Matthew,” associate professor of drama and director Joshua Blann said. “It is basically the story of Jesus set to live rock music.”

Musicals are difficult for NW Campus to produce due to the large amount of actors and time required, Blann said, but this time they listened to the students’ requests.

“We’ve been getting requests from our students for many years to do a really big musical,” Blann said. “We decided to do it because it’s a manageable-sized musical. It’s just a good-sized musical for our students.”

NW student Emmanuel Colon-Nieves is making his performing debut portraying the main role of Jesus in “Godspell.”

“The character of Jesus is really happy and he has high energy,” Colon-Nieves said. “It’s going to be really great.”

The character of Judas, played by NW student Phillip Shoemaker, explores themes of betrayal and challenges the basic notions of good and evil.

“I originally auditioned for the role of Jesus, but when I saw [Colon-Nieves] try out, I switched to Judas,” Shoemaker said. “Plus, it’s always fun to play the villain.”

Stage director Casey Nail said that the musical is also about community and about everyday people.

The performance is about building community with people, Nail said. Blann wanted the characters to reflect parts of society such as youth, lower class, homeless and military.

“The way the show is written, the characters are just your average everyday people, so in all productions they just use the actors name to reflect that,” Nail said.

NW student Ahmad Alamin, who is playing a military veteran named Ahmad, said the character he is playing gives him room to express himself.

“We can just have fun with it,” Alamin said. “I mean, my character is named after me.”

Shoemaker urged students to attend, and highlighted some of the reasons why this performance will be unlike any you have seen at TCC before.

“The musical is so entertaining, and it involves the audience a lot,” Shoemaker said. “And the cast is so, so, so talented. It’s going to be so good.”

Blann expects a full house, and encourages everyone who plans to attend to get their tickets as soon as they can.

“We highly recommend that people call ahead and make reservations,” Blann said. “We expect the show to be very full.”

Oct. 2-Oct. 5 at 7:30 p.m.
Oct. 6 at 2:00 p.m.
Theater Northwest

Tickets are free for TCC students, faculty and staff, and are available a week before the first show by calling 817-515-7724.

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