Godspell's Original Producer, Edgar Lansbury, Will Help Produce Broadway Revival

News   Godspell's Original Producer, Edgar Lansbury, Will Help Produce Broadway Revival
 
Edgar Lansbury, producer of both the original Broadway production and the 1973 motion picture adaptation of Godspell, has joined the producing team of the new Broadway revival of the Stephen Schwartz rock musical.

Edgar Lansbury
Edgar Lansbury Photo by Joseph Marzullo/WENN

Producer Ken Davenport made the announcement on July 28. As previously announced, Godspell begins preview performances at Circle in the Square Theatre (1633 Broadway at 50th Street) on Oct. 13. Opening night is Nov. 7.

Daniel Goldstein directs, marking his Broadway debut as a director (he was an associate director of All Shook Up). Tony Award nominee Christopher Gattelli (South Pacific) choreographs.

Lansbury said in a statement, "Godspell has been a presence in my life for half a century, and I am privileged to be a part of this new incarnation under the talented management of Ken Davenport."

Davenport said, "One of the reasons for its success is Edgar Lansbury. To have him as a part of the producing team is an incredible honor."

Born in London, Edgar Lansbury was the son of Belfast-born actress Moyna MacGill and Edgar Lansbury, a politician and businessman, and the grandson of former Labour Party leader George Lansbury. He is the younger brother of actress Angela Lansbury and the twin brother of television producer Bruce Lansbury. His first Broadway producing credit was Frank Gilroy's The Subject Was Roses in 1964, which was honored with the Pulitzer Prize, the Tony Award, the Critics' Circle Award and the Outer Critics' Circle Award.

Since then, he has produced many shows on Broadway and off, including Gilroy's The Only Game in Town, Promenade, The Magic Show, Godspell, Gypsy, Grace & Glorie, Douglas Carter Beane's Advice from a Caterpillar and David Mamet's Tony Award-winning play American Buffalo.

In addition to producing the motion picture "Godspell," Lansbury's other film credits include "The Wild Party," "Blue Sunshine," "Squirm" and the big-screen adaptation of "The Subject Was Roses."

Lansbury is chairman emeritus of The Acting Company, a touring repertory company of actors trained in the classic tradition, founded by John Houseman and Margot Harley 25 years ago.

Godspell is produced by Ken Davenport, Edgar Lansbury and The People of Godspell. Complete casting will be announced soon.

Godspell's creative team includes scenic designer David Korins (Passing Strange, Bridge and Tunnel), costume designer Miranda Hoffman (Well) and orchestrator Michael Holland (Hurricane).

Goldstein reunites with the designers of the critically-acclaimed 2006 Paper Mill Playhouse conception of Godspell for this new Broadway production that has been "completely re-imagined" for the Circle in the Square, Broadway's only in-the-round theatre.

Conceived and originally directed by John-Michael Tebelak with music and new lyrics by Academy and Grammy Award winner Stephen Schwartz (Wicked, Pippin), Godspell — a hip musical re-telling of the New Testament's Gospel of Matthew — made its New York City premiere in May 1971. The show was an Off-Broadway and Broadway smash in th 1970s. The Tony-nominated score features the songs "Day by Day," "Turn Back, O Man," "Learn Your Lessons Well, "Prepare Ye the Way," "Light of the World" and many more.

Godspell features a score by Schwartz and a book by John-Michael Tebelak. The musical, the producers say, uses "improvisation and contemporary themes to illustrate the parables, [bringing] these lessons to life through the grand tradition of musical theatre."

After a five-year run Off-Broadway (the musical opened at the Cherry Lane Theatre May 13, 1971, and transferred to the Promenade in August of that year), Godspell opened at Broadway's Broadhurst Theatre in June 1976. It eventually played both the Plymouth and Ambassador theatres before closing Sept. 4, 1977, after 527 regular performances.

Tickets are $125 for all performances except Saturday evenings, which are $135. Tickets are available by calling Telecharge.com at (212) 239-6200 or by visiting www.telecharge.com/godspell.

Visit www.godspell.com for more information.

The box office for walkup sales opens Sept. 19.

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