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BWW Review: GODSPELL 50TH ANNIVERSARY CONCERT, The Hope Mill Theatre Online

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West End stars unite for special Godspell 50th Anniversary online concert

BWW Review: GODSPELL 50TH ANNIVERSARY CONCERT, The Hope Mill Theatre OnlineBWW Review: GODSPELL 50TH ANNIVERSARY CONCERT, The Hope Mill Theatre Online

West End stars unite for this special Godspell 50th Anniversary online concert, streaming worldwide for three days only. This production is by Thomas Hopkins & Michael Quinn for Ginger Quiff Media and the Hope Mill Theatre, and it's raising money for charities including the Hope Mill (A Factory of Creativity CIO), Acting For Others, and National AIDS Trust.

Godspell tells a series of parables leading up to the Passion of Christ, with a driving message of hope and community that resonates with all, and is particularly poignant during this difficult time in our history. The modern pop/rock score by the genius that is Stephen Schwartz (Wicked, Pippin, The Prince of Egypt), contemporises the religious premise, and is upbeat and catchy.

Award-winning director Michael Strassen has done a wonderful job at transferring this beloved musical to the online platform. Each actor and musician is completely self-isolated and brought together by technology. But the production value is so good that this does not take away from the story, and in some ways even aids it.

To begin with, everyone who recorded at home or indoors has a plain white backdrop with fantastic sound quality. This continuity goes a long way. The creative graphics used to then bring these screens together helped create movement on what would otherwise be a static screen. We are so used to seeing dance and configurations on stage that it is lovely seeing a resemblance of this in an online concert - an element which is often lost through social distancing and isolation.

The interluding songs filmed in specific locations is a wonderful addition, particularly the ones shot in the breathtaking English countryside. Ruthie Henshall fans will love her sexy bathtub rendition of "Turn Back O Man". Alison Jiear's "Bless The Lord" sung running through a church is wild and fabulous. Jodie Steele's "Beautiful City" is heartfelt and raw with merely a white backdrop and a close-up camera angle.

There are too many stars to name in this production: suffice to say none disappoint. More West End favourites include Darren Day, Dear Evan Hansen's Sam Tutty, Ria Jones and Jenna Russell. They are supported by a chorus from drama school Italia Conti.

This unique online production of a much-loved musical is a treat for the whole family, and a great example of utilising modern technology.

Tickets can be purchased HERE for the Godspell 50th Anniversary concert streaming until 29 August


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