September 29, 2008
Performing Arts performs Godspell October 1-5

Lees-McRae College Performing Arts will present Godspell, a delightful musical retelling of the book of Mathew, Oct. 1-5 in Hayes Auditorium in Banner Elk.

Parables from the Bible demonstrate truths that transcend many beliefs and religions throughout time: kindness, tolerance and love. Much of Godspell's magic comes from its music, created by Jewish composer Stephen Schwartz. Schwartz clearly saw the transcendent themes.

Schwartz's prolific resume includes stage shows such as Wicked, Pippin and Children of Eden, and films like The Little Mermaid, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, and Pocahontas. The composer has won three Grammy Awards, three academy Awards and garnered six Tony Award nominations. Godspell, his first musical, has stood the test of time for nearly 40 years.

Actors in the Lees-McRae Performing Arts production will be representing themselves as students at the college. The stage, with projections and intricate lighting, will represent locations around Banner Elk and the campus.

Lighting designer Danielle Baisden will match the projections to their locations using, for example, dappled light for scenes along the Elk River. Jason Pickering, sound designer, will be matching the ambient sounds that would naturally go with each projection - sounds of a waterfall, birds and even traffic. Scenic designer and artist Chris Carr plans to place large paintings of local and campus sights around the framing of the stage. Tessa Carr, costumer, will be working with the students and their own wardrobes to create a contemporary feel to the play.

Godspell's contemporary style should engage younger audiences who may not know of the original, very '70s hit musical. The themes, however, should also attract older audiences, church and youth groups, families and others who love musicals that bolster the spirit.

Directed by Janet Barton Speer with musical direction by James Taylor, the play will be performed Oct. 1-3 at 7:30 p.m., Oct. 4 at 8 p.m. and Oct. 5 at 2 p.m. Tickets are $12 for adults and $5 for children, and student tickets will be available at the door one hour prior to show time.

There is no box office daily or weekly. Please arrive early to purchase tickets the night of the show. There is no reserved seating. For more information, check out our website at, call (828) 898-8709 for an automated message system, or email

Media Contact:

Blaine Hansen  |  Vice President of Strategic Planning and Effectiveness
Tel: 828.898.8838  |  Email: