Fort Worth Academy of Fine Arts presents 'Godspell' musical


The best part of the arts is finding an unknown band or performer before they hit the mainstream and following them around from bar to hall to eventually a sold out stadium or theater.

Any performer who has worked their way to the top would have without a doubt started off performing onstage in some small venue before maybe a handful of people.

Sold out stadiums and theaters are great, but it’s those small venue shows that in retrospect hold the fondest memories.

Small venues have something that large, overcrowded ones do not. They have heart. They also have the ability to connect audience and performer so the audience can truly know the person and see that performing is their passion.

And that was the scene last weekend when "Godspell," a musical, opened at the Fort Worth Academy of Fine Arts.

Since 1971, "Godspell" has captivated audiences, and entertained millions of people throughout the world. Originally directed by John Michael Tebelak, the musical is based on a series of parables mostly from the Gospel of Matthew.

According to FWAFA’s website, “Stephen Schwartz brings his first musical into the 21st century with a fresh approach in this 2012 Broadway Revival version of "Godspell.”

 FWAFA’s version of "Godspell" is under the direction of C. Nicholas Morris.

From senior actor Alexander Cook in the role of John the Baptist/ Judas to senior Chontol Calvin and her soulful voice to senior McKenna Meachem and her unstoppable energy, the play flew forward with no disappointments.

The production also included performances by freshman Hayden Hart in the lead role of Jesus. Clayton Slee adds his own brand of humor and dance to the mix to bring the musical full circle.

The remaining cast members all outperformed one another.

Afterward, Meachem and Hart spoke about the show’s casting.

 “The hard audition made you want to work,” said Hart.

“The audition was difficult.” Meachem agreed. “But the play brought everyone together as a group.”

Upcoming performances of Godspell will be held 7 p.m. Oct. 30 through Nov. 1 in the Mary D. and F. Howard Walsh Fine Arts Center. FWAFA is located at 3901 S. Hulen Street. Advance tickets cost $13 for adults and $5 for students. Tickets can also be purchased at the door for $15 for adults and $7 for students.