GODSPELL AT THE WESTCHESTER BROADWAY THEATREPublished: Tuesday, July 14, 2015 By: Gary Chattman Source: WESTCHESTER ARTS & EDUCATION REVIEW
Well, they’ve done it again! For the 190th time, the folks at WBT have given Westchester a doozy of a show!
Stephen Schwartz, the lyricist and composer, who has a long-running show now on Broadway (named “Wicked”) wrote the music and lyrics for this roustabout show! And the inimitable John Fanelli has brought it to life, in Elmsford.
It isn’t dated—there are references to that man Trump and to Elmsford mixed in, while this exuberant cast plays with the gospels and the story of Jesus, to show us, the audience, the positive side—the happy side—the joyful side—of religion. No preaching here, ladies and gentlemen. No sermons. Just a musical cavalcade of hope for us all.
Isn’t theatre (note I spelled it the WBT way) supposed to uplift us from sadness? Change melancholy to high spirits? Making us aware of our fellow person, with empathy? Make us more aware of how lucky we are to be living on this earth?
Yes! “Prepare Ye” to be entertained; “Learn Your Lessons Well;” “We Beseech Thee” to have a good time, and you will, you definitely will!
I would like to single out a cast member who is superlative…but, in this case, I can’t. The whole cast deserves kudos! Take Gilbert D. Sanchez, as Jesus. He owns the stage! What about Xander Chauncey, as John and Judas? His happiness is catching!
Add Josh Kenney, Kareema Castro Khouri and Greweta Kleckner and Nicholas Park and Devon Perry and Nation Andrew Riley and Sarah Smithton and Karley Willocks, and you truly have a phenomenal ensemble.
How exactly did Fanelli do such magic? Come to this “Beautiful City”, and don’t “Turn back, O Man!” Come see this Westchester Broadway Show, for it will be the light of your world, as it is the “Light of The World!”