Godspell: It is being reported that Gavin Creel will play Jesus

It is being reported that Gavin Creel will play the title role of 'Jesus' in the Broadway revival of the rock musical Godspell, opening on Broadway in Aug 2008, following previews in Jul.

Creel was nominated for a Tony Award for Best Actor in a Musical when he made his Broadway debut as 'Jimmy Smith' in 'Thoroughly Modern Millie' (2002). He last appeared on Broadway in 'La Cage aux Folles' (2004 revival). He played the role of 'Bert, the chimney sweep', in the London production of 'Mary Poppins'.

This new production of Godspell will mark the first Broadway revival of the American musical since its run ended thirty years ago. With music and lyrics by Stephen Schwartz (Wicked, Pippin, The Magic Show) and book by John-Michael Tebelak, Godspell will reunite the creative team of the critically-acclaimed 2006 Paper Mill Playhouse conception in a completely new production, marking the Broadway debut of director Daniel Goldstein.

The new production of Godspellwill feature choreography by Christopher Gattelli (Martin Short: Fame Becomes Me) scenic design by David Korins (Passing Strange, Bridge and Tunnel), costumes by Miranda Hoffman (Well), lighting by Ben Stanton (Altar Boyz) and sound by Randy Hanson.

Godspell embraces the 21st century in this new production of one of the longest-running Off-Broadway musicals. Using improvisation and contemporary themes to illustrate the parables, Godspell brings these lessons to life through the grand tradition of musical theatre.

The score, by Academy and Grammy Award winner and six time Tony Award nominee Stephen Schwartz (Wicked, Pippin), features recognizable songs, such as "Day by Day", that have become staples of both the American musical theatre and popular culture alike. With a book by John-Michael Tebelak, Godspell is based upon "The Gospel of Matthew."

Godspell opened off-Broadway at the Cherry Lane Theatre on 13 May 1971 and in August of 1971 moved to the larger Promenade Theatre where it ran for 2,124 performances making it one of the longest running Off-Broadway musicals in history.

After five years of sold-out audiences Off-Broadway, Godspell made its Broadway debut on 22 Jun 1976 at the Broadhurst Theatre. The show moved to the Plymouth and the Ambassador before closing on 4 Sep 1977 after 527 performances. In all, the musical achieved more than 2,600 performances both on Broadway and off.

Gavin Creel

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