More than 70 students from public and private schools all around the state and nearby Massachusetts are involved in this year’s Summer Stage theater production at Bishop Hendricken High School. A full cast and crew are performing Stephen Schwartz’s hit musical, “Godspell” in the Dr. Daniel S. Harrop Theater from Aug. 3-5 at 7 p.m. and on Sunday, Aug. 6 at 2 p.m. Tickets are $12 for students and seniors and $15 for adults and can be purchased online at www.hendrickendrama.weebly.com or by calling the Box Office at (401) 739-3450 ext. 172. The Box Office will be open for ticket sales two hours prior to each performance.
“This musical is one that has some powerful, beautiful messages that need to be shared now more than ever,” said Director Julia Paolino. “The piece’s themes of love, community, compassion and acceptance are issues the world is struggling with right now, making our work as artists all the more important. I’m deeply proud to see how our student artists-as future generations of leaders-have handled the challenge of putting this production up.”
Michaela Vieira, a soloist from Cranston agrees completely.
“‘Godspell’ is a show about faith, joy, compassion, strength and love,” she said. “Focusing on the power of community, everyone in our company uses their own talents and abilities to create something extraordinary on stage.”
Those who are involved feel blessed to be a part of something so important in today’s world.
“This show is an honor to be a part of, particularly in today’s day and age,” said Madelyn Dutilly, a soloist from Warwick. “The production’s messages teach important life lessons on how we can get along as neighbors, value each other’s opinions and build positive, supportive communities together.”
Her castmate, Gillian Austin, a soloist from Johnston, agrees.
“It is a gift to be a part of this production. Realize the importance of being in a community that respects you for what you bring to the table, and who you are, is a blessing,” she said.
The show itself was more difficult to tackle, given its themes, according to producer and music director Richard Sylvia, of Cranston.
“‘Godspell’ is such a difficult piece to tackle because of the weight and significance of its themes,” he said. “I am absolutely blown away at how our student artists have stepped up to the challenge of mounting this beautiful production, truly making it their own, and building a loving, supportive community in the process.”
Bishop Hendricken’s Summer Stage program has been in existence since 2000 and prides itself on being a caring environment for its artists, which encourages growth and caring for its individual artists and the community as a whole. This year’s production of “Godspell” does just that, according to Assistant Director Matthew Beaune, of Warwick.
“Summer Stage at Bishop Hendricken has always been a place where people of different backgrounds can come together to form a community, and the community that the company has formed makes this production stand out in an impressive way.”
The following Cranston residents are taking part in the production: Giancarlo Gentili, Lauren Smith, Michaela Vieira, Samantha Schleifer, Isabella Payne, Caroline Cowart, Giulianna Gentili, Jenna Andrade, Jordan Scarduzio, Maria Caserta, Maria Cherry and Richard Sylvia (Producer/Music Director).