Find all the local art events happening in Fargo-Moorhead
Prepare Ye the Way of the Lord: FMCT brings Godspell to life this summer
Director Natalie Novacek explores new angle with all-female cast
Fargo-Moorhead Community Theatre (FMCT) was one of the first amateur theatres to bring the fresh-from-New York Godspell to a local stage. It was a huge hit, so much so that FMCT extended its run — a rare occurrence in the theatre world.
“It’s so different than Oklahoma, or The Music Man, or many of the other shows popular at the time,” said FMCT Artistic Director, Adam Pankow. “It’s really was a revolutionary show.” Now, 45 years later, it is coming back to the local stage again this July. “To me, Godspell is the perfect summertime production,” Pankow said. “It’s a timeless story with incredible music. We’re excited to bring it back to
The musical, written and first performed by a group of drama students at Carnegie Mellon University before becoming an international success, walks through the parables of the book of Matthew while following Jesus and his disciples. The characters tell stories marked by now-famous songs by three-time Grammy and Academy Award winner Steven Schwartz, such as the international hit, “Day by Day.”
Opening July 17, FMCT’s productionis directed by Natalie Novacek and will feature an all-female cast. The decision came about naturally, Pankow said, after going through the auditions and realizing the possibility for creating a new perspective.
“We took a look at the talent and thought, ‘What if this was an all women cast?’” Pankow said. “We think having all female disciples and a female Jesus and Judas on stage will add an interesting perspective to the story.”
The community also has the opportunity for a unique theatre pairing, Pankow said, as FMCT is bringing Jesus Christ Superstar to the stage a week after Godspell’s run ends. The two shows are complementary in that they are both 1970’s era musicals that pushed the genres of musical theatre through their methods and approach to the subject matter.
“Both of these shows approach the same story in a totally different ways,” Pankow said. “I think there’s something to learn from seeing both shows in tandem. They’re a perfect complement to each other.”
Tickets for Godspell and Jesus Christ Superstar are available now at fmct.org. Godspell will run from July 17-21 and Jesus Christ Superstar will run from July 26-28 & 30-August 2. Patrons can save $5 when buying tickets for both shows with FMCT’s summer “Disciple Deal” special. To purchase tickets, call 701-235-6778 or purchase online at fmct.org.