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November 12, 2003

Presenting 'Superstar' is emotional experience for cast

From: Press & Sun-Bulletin, NY - Nov 12, 2003

BY SARAH D'ESTI MILLER Press & Sun-Bulletin

Before Evita, before Cats, before Phantom, there was Jesus Christ Superstar, the Andrew Lloyd Webber/Tim Rice rock opera collaboration that changed the face of musical theater.

The EPAC Repertory Company is ready to bring Superstar, which examines the last seven days of the life of Jesus of Nazareth, to the Endicott Performing Arts Center stage. Director Patrick Foti promises the show will be faithful to the edginess of the Broadway production.

Plus there will be something special in store for the Thursday, Nov. 20, performance: Dee Arnold and Jo Whitney will be signing for a special seating area reserved for the deaf.

"I thought it was a great idea," Foti said. "They do it at the Hangar Theatre in Ithaca and other places."

Brett Nichols of Binghamton will be playing the role of Jesus, on many levels a daunting prospect.

"It's intense," he summed up recently. "It's the hardest physical role I've ever had to do. I spend the last half of the show getting beat up and, of course, there's the crucifixion. It's really hard to get into that mental place."


How about playing the woman who falls for Jesus?

"THAT'S a little weird," said Chandice AT Guyette, who plays Mary Magdalene, adding that the role is also a challenge for other reasons.

"(It's difficult) thinking people might not be liking me right now because I am supposed to be a prostitute-type person," she said.

Foti said the toughest part about directing the show is "controlling the mob," but it's worth the effort because Superstar resonates with him every time.

"The best part is the feelings that it creates inside and all the questions it arouses," he said. "The hair on my arm still stands up at certain parts."

If You Go

WHAT: EPAC Repertory Company presents the rock musical Jesus Christ Superstar, directed by Pat Foti with musical direction by Terry Martens

WHEN: 8 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Nov. 20-22; 3 p.m. Sunday

WHERE: Endicott Performing Arts Center, 102 Washington Ave., Endicott


MORE INFORMATION:Call 785-8903 or

© 2003 Binghamton Press & Sun-Bulletin