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Godspell: A new class interpretation

"'Godspell' is a show about the creation of a community."

That's the way Artistic Director Ted McCadden describes the musical that the Liberty Showcase Theatre is preparing to present later this month.

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Liberty Showcase Theatre, a program of Owings Mills Recreation & Parks, has been performing locally since 1973.

The group actually performed "Godspell" twice before, the first time being in 1978 under the name Liberty Road Community Theatre and the next time in 1992 under its current moniker.

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The musical is such an audience and production favorite that they decided to bring it back for a third showing.

"It's a favorite of several of us who are involved with the show," McCadden said.

Serving in his second summer as artistic director, McCadden, who is also president of the board of directors, started working with the theatre in 1996 as a musician in the pit orchestra.

For Godspell, he was involved in selecting the cast and coming up with the overall concept and design of the show.

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"There's a great deal of whimsical content which makes rehearsals a lot of fun," he said.

Elizabeth Kanner, who plays Liz in Godspell, said that McCadden and the second artistic director for the show, Jay Althouse have created a unique way of presenting the musical.

Liberty Showcase's Godspell is set in a classroom, with all of the characters learning about the parables as illustrated in the Gospel According to Matthew in the Bible.

"It's a really different interpretation of the show," Kanner said. "It's usually done with clowns or hippies."

Kanner, who has been acting since she was 12, is making her Liberty Showcase Theatre debut.

She'll be singing two of the show's signature tunes, "Day by Day" and "Turn Back, O Man."

"I am nervously looking forward to it," she said.

The cast has been rehearsing for the show at Timber Grove and Owings Mills Elementary Schools.

All 11 cast members share the stage together throughout the duration of the show.

"It feels like a family when you're working with them," Actress Barbara Gasper said.

In her fourth Liberty Showcase Theatre show, Gasper will be playing the teacher in this interpretation of the musical.

"It's the kind of show that works well when there is chemistry in the cast," McCadden said.

"This is going to be a good show," Gasper said.

Liberty Showcase Theatre's Godspell will play at Owings Mills High School, 124 Tollgate Road in Owings Mills July 20-22 and 27-29 with Friday and Saturday shows at 7 p.m. and Sunday shows at 2 p.m. Tickets are $16 and $13 for senior citizens, children under 12 and students with I.D. For more information, call 410-340-0821, email

or go to http://www.libertyshowcasetheatre.org.

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