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Musicals in Christian Colleges

BwayDude2
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Musicals in Christian Colleges#1
Posted: 1/13/15 at 4:23pm
I know in some true Christian Colleges, there's only so many musicals you can do due to material and what's appropriate, (Which sometimes stinks). What are some musicals that Christian Colleges can do, and what are some Broadway songs that are good for students to sing in Christian Colleges?
Falling
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Musicals in Christian Colleges#2
Posted: 1/13/15 at 4:36pm
How about some music from "Children of Eden"? You could also do some of the songs from classics like "West Side Story" and "The Music Man".
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Musicals in Christian Colleges#2
Posted: 1/13/15 at 4:44pm
The Book of Mormon!
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Musicals in Christian Colleges#3
Posted: 1/13/15 at 4:50pm
You can't get much more conservative or Christian than Pepperdine in Malibu. And they did EVITA.

Granted the faculty director was suspended, but that was because he staged a number with the chorus girls wearing the "cone bras" that Madonna had just made popular in a video. Christians are funny. Sleeping your way to become First Lady of Argentina (Come to think of it, isn't that how all First Ladies get their jobs?) wasn't a a problem, just the cone bras.

They did DEATH OF A SALESMAN and a musical version of LITTLE WOMEN during the semester I was teaching there.

So I think the answer is it varies greatly from school to school. But you're probably safe with most shows from the 40s and 50s.
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darquegk
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Musicals in Christian Colleges#4
Posted: 1/13/15 at 4:53pm
Seton Hill University, a Catholic college of some repute, is still known for staging risque or outrageous musicals more often than not- Urinetown, Bat Boy and Cabaret being the most recent, with the (relatively tamer) A Little Night Music up next.
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Musicals in Christian Colleges#5
Posted: 1/13/15 at 5:25pm
Isn't Seton Hall a Jesuit college? God bless them, I think the Jesuit colleges are known for allowing more latitude because of their respect for the educational process.

It's the evangelical Protestant schools that tend to favor theological and "moral" purity over intellectual curiosity. (Example: at Congregationalist Pepperdine, homosexuality was considered worse than murder and one of my students was barred from staging an original play that viewed sexual diversity in a positive light. But when my niece was applying to a Jesuit college, she was asked to write an essay on her personal experience with diversity. I asked the admissions officer if my niece should write about her experience planning her uncles' gay wedding and was told, "Oh, yes! We'd love that.")

These are broad generalizations, of course. I'm sure there are exceptions among both groups.
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Musicals in Christian Colleges#6
Posted: 1/13/15 at 5:28pm
THE SECRET GARDEN is a good musical to perform. It has a great score.


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Musicals in Christian Colleges#7
Posted: 1/13/15 at 5:56pm
I went to a Christian college that is definitely more conservative than Pepperdine Musicals in Christian Colleges Some of the musicals that have been staged there over the years include: The Sound of Music, Godspell, Fiddler on the Roof, Into the Woods, Oklahoma!, and The Music Man. (I think the theatre program used to focus primarily on plays, but now does one main play in the fall and one main musical in the spring, with "one act" showcases, and other events scattered in between the two main shows).
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Musicals in Christian Colleges#8
Posted: 1/13/15 at 6:33pm
Not Seton Hall but Seton Hill. In the Pittsburgh area. It's an up and coming college- they were the first to do the "iPad for Everyone" full Mac integration with everyone on campus. Their performing arts program is growing rapidly- two new buildings created in six years.

They're famously liberal as far as Christian schools go, partially because it's a Catholic university and partially just because it is. The joke on campus is that the wicca outnumber the Catholics.
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Musicals in Christian Colleges#9
Posted: 1/13/15 at 7:06pm
Bare.

Jokes apart, I think Pippin is the best musical for young people to do, and it's fit for Christians.
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Musicals in Christian Colleges#10
Posted: 1/13/15 at 7:35pm
Pippin? A show that mocks the church, has an actual orgy, war/murder, and has an implied incestuous relationship?
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Musicals in Christian Colleges#11
Posted: 1/13/15 at 7:35pm

The Obvious:

Godspell
Joseph and the Amazing blah blah.
Fiddler on the roof?
Jesus Christ Superstar.

I went to a Christian school and we always did something from Roger and Hammerstein:

King and I
Cinderella
Oklahoma


Disney is always a good choice if you don't want to ruffle feathers:

Beauty and The Beast.
Little Mermaid jr.
My son Pinocchio
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Musicals in Christian Colleges#12
Posted: 1/13/15 at 8:04pm
Godspell and Jesus Christ Superstar aren't obvious choices for evangelical Christian schools. A lot of Protestants hate them, especially JCS.
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Musicals in Christian Colleges#13
Posted: 1/13/15 at 8:04pm
I once saw BAT BOY at Duquesne University. One of the most enjoyable theater experiences I've had actually.
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Musicals in Christian Colleges#14
Posted: 1/13/15 at 8:26pm
I also teach theatre at a pretty conservative school filled with many devout Christians. It's not a Christian school officially, but it's got that culture. You'll unfortunately never see my avatar on our stage. However, most shows written before the late 1960's should be fine. The "golden age" musicals and plays. Just cut any "goddamnit"s and such.

However, I would actually recommend AGAINST doing a Christian-themed show. There's too much of a chance of people thinking something is sacrilegious. I once brought up the idea of doing Jesus Christ Superstar and it got shot down pretty fast, lol.
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Musicals in Christian Colleges#15
Posted: 1/13/15 at 8:55pm
I'm currently a student at a pretty conservative Christian college. The main productions are usually plays, but they once did ONCE ON THIS ISLAND with an almost entirely white cast. They put on INTO THE WOODS last year, and maybe a one or two performance run of THE LAST 5 YEARS. A few years ago, one of the student directors did CRIMES OF THE HEART and apparently got into trouble from the Board of Trustees.
What's more interesting is that every year, the sophomore class does their own production, separated from the proper theater department. Like others have suggested, they've mostly stuck with Golden Age musicals. But even then, they made changes to HOW TO SUCCEED (like taking out "A Secretary is Not a Toy"). I'm not sure they made the changes legally, but they made them nonetheless.
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Musicals in Christian Colleges#16
Posted: 1/13/15 at 9:37pm
Two by Two.
I Do, I Do.
Weird symmetry!
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Musicals in Christian Colleges#17
Posted: 1/13/15 at 9:48pm
You're A Good Man Charlie Brown
Snoopy
Big River
Annie Get Your Gun
The Unsinkable Molly Brown
The Apple Tree
Shenandoah (with a few minor changes to the first song)
Bells Are Ringing
Wonderful Town
Nunsense
Hello Dolly
Bye Bye Birdie
The Music Man


If anyone ever tells you that you put too much Parmesan cheese on your pasta, stop talking to them. You don't need that kind of negativity in your life.
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Musicals in Christian Colleges#18
Posted: 1/13/15 at 9:56pm
We did Godspell and Sweeney Todd at our college.
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Musicals in Christian Colleges#19
Posted: 1/13/15 at 9:59pm
Once on this Island, Suessical, The Music Man, The Wiz
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Musicals in Christian Colleges#20
Posted: 1/13/15 at 10:22pm
My condolences to those trapped in conservative work environments and educational institutions.

My rec: "Oh, Calcutta!"

I once recommended "Hair" as a Spring musical to Sister in "Late Night Catechism." One of the greatest suggestions I even made in my life.
Can you hear me now? Twitter: @NamoInExile
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Musicals in Christian Colleges#21
Posted: 1/14/15 at 12:13am
"The Boy Friend"

"Little Mary Sunshine"
"I'm a comedian, but in my spare time, things bother me." Garry Shandling
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Musicals in Christian Colleges#22
Posted: 1/14/15 at 1:37am
Curtains and Drowsy Chaperone are two very fun musicals I have done at Christian Schools. Honk! is a blast to put on as well. Not very well known and kind of young, but I had a great time. Always stick with the classics if you aren't sure.

Funny, my college is the exact opposite. Religious by name, but relatively liberal. I heard we are doing Rent this semester.
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Musicals in Christian Colleges#23
Posted: 1/14/15 at 5:11am
"TINTYPES" might work well, because it's an American-popular-music and history circa 1888 to 1918, with great musical challenges for the cast and marvelous orchestrations. I suppose one might be able to get an option to do it with a cast larger than five. Hell, royalties are royalties and the show isn't performed that often.

The "fantasy" shows like "PETER PAN" or "IT'S A BIRD, IT'S A PLANE, IT'S SUPERMAN" or ""THE APPLE TREE" could also work.



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Musicals in Christian Colleges#24
Posted: 1/14/15 at 9:13am
The first time I ever saw "Godspell" was at a small Christian college in Florida. They did a fantastic job.

(Years later I choreographed a number from "Godspell" for a dance show at my own small Christian college, and it went over very well. Except the costumes -- handmade by a student -- were pretty bad. Sometimes the biggest problem that these small Christian colleges have to deal with isn't restrictive standards, but tight budgets!)