Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : May 3rd 2014 Contents A41
Saturday, May 3, 2014 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
The quiet of St Agnes Church hall is broken
by a cast of both experienced and first-time
singers diligently running their vocal scales.
Their energy charges the early rehearsals of
First Instinct Productions production of
Jesus Christ Superstar 2014.
The First Instinct Productions cast and crew
have been rehearsing hard every day for more
than a month in preparation for the latest
grand musical production, Jesus Christ Super-
star. With music by Andrew Lloyd Webber
and lyrics by Tim Rice, this musical borrows
from the Gospels of the Bible; Matthew, Mark,
Luke and John. The musical tells the story of
the last seven days of Jesus Christ s life, with
a twist---through the genre of Rock and Roll.
In the orchestra, the production has man-
aged to attract some noteworthy musicians.
Listening to the musical overture s opening
guitar riffs, one can hear the dextrous John
Hussain of Mungal Patasar & Pantar and neo-
kaiso/rock band Gyazette handling the
funk/rock inspired phrases easily. Combined
with guitarist Francesco Emmanuel, a member
of the Canadian Juno award nominated Kobo
Town, the orchestra fills out nicely to include
all the ingredients of a very interesting sound.
A Lorraine Granderson led Bishop Anstey High
School Choir and Steel Ensemble return for
this production along with accomplished
pianist/keyboardist Gregory Wong Fo Sue.
According to Granderson, the orchestra s
preparations have been coming along well.
"The choir is actually rehearsing with the
rest of the cast without me! They have been
warned about maintaining the discipline
expected and I ve been told they are doing
Granderson is working with the orchestra
separately, which also includes several brass
instrumentalists and a percussionist from the
T&T Police Band.
When asked about the challenge of merging
the steelpan into all 24 pieces of the music
score, Granderson was confident that the com-
bination would work. "A lot of the music in
the written score is for keyboard and guitar:
some of it is also acoustic, so that is where
the pan will feature. The pan is a versatile
instrument, it can fit in anywhere and it
changes the timbre of anything you put it
with. It is a magical instrument! It is also in
keeping with the philosophy espoused by First
Instinct in having the national instrument in
all of its productions."
Veteran director of the production is Ray-
mond Choo Kong. Choo Kong believes that
the musical will be a fantastic addition to the
First Instinct line up of productions. "As you
would note, First Instinct does huge produc-
tions---we do musicals---and this one is going
to be the largest: the stage will be filled with
crowds and lots of choreography. It s a cast
of about 70-something and of all ages. We
have from four-year-olds all the way up to
the mature ones." He also pointed out the
modern feel of the musical that audiences will
be offered. "It s a great musical with well
known songs and done in a very modern style."
First Instinct Productions executive producer
John Smith recalled an even earlier production
in 1979 by the Trinartistes Productions, just
eight years after the original Broadway debut.
"Trinartistes was my production
company...and having done it in 1979, I think
it s a story that I am truly rediscovering. It s
amazing and alarming how many people know
so little about the Jesus story. It s kind of a
patchy network in their heads." First Instinct
Productions intends to see it retold in all its
glory and more. "I wanted to repeat the 1979
experience and really do it the way I didn t
get to in 1979."
The cast includes Kearn Samuel in the prin-
cipal role of Judas, Conrad Parris as the con-
spirator Annas and Mark Ewing as Caiaphas.
Devin Harry Paul will reprise the role of Jesus
in this production, having done it in a local
2005 version of the musical, and the role of
Mary Magdalene will be played by newcomer,
16-year-old Kristen Honeywell.
Jesus Christ Superstar comes to Napa
In rehearsals for Jesus Christ Superstar, Jesus Christ, played by Devindra Harry Paul, makes his
triumphant entrance into Jerusalem.
• Jesus Christ Superstar opens at Napa in
Port-of-Spain on May 7 and runs until May 11.
Tickets will be available at Napa Box Office.
There will also be special performances for
schools and early purchase special ticket prices
for Senior Citizens and children.
For more information, contact First Instinct
Productions at 461-4033 and 287-8671 or check
their Facebook page at First Instinct Productions
and Twitter using the hashtag #FIsJCS.
Links Archive May 2nd 2014 May 4th 2014 Navigation Previous Page Next Page