In Part 2 of a series of interviews with the cast of Godspell at Olney Theatre Center, meet Kurt Boehm.
Joel: Please introduce yourself and tell our readers where they may have seen you in the past year on local stages?
My name is Kurt Boehm. I am returning to Olney Theatre Center after previously appearing in How To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying last year. I also was in Fiddler on the Roof at Arena Stage and The Last Five Years at Red Branch Theatre.
Why did you want to be part of Godspell at Olney Theatre Center?
The new arrangements are a killer! Olney has also become a second home for me. To be able to work with people who feel like family is a dream.
Why is this musical so relevant today and what does it have to say to audiences of all ages?
This musical challenges all ages to examine their faith. No matter your age, Godspell helps you gain perspective.
Who do you play in the show and what songs do you sing? If you have a solo tells us what it is and what the song means to the character and to you.
I sing “We Beseech Thee”! The song occurs late in the second act. It’s uplifting, high energy, and a blast to perform. My character takes the longest time to really buy into what Jesus is teaching. The payoff is worth the wait. I have always loved the song and to be able to sing this new arrangement with this stellar cast is too much fun.
Have you appeared in other productions of Godspell and who did you play, and how is this production different and unique?
I was in the ensemble in 1999 in New Jersey. Our production is unique because of the people involved. We push each other, challenge the script, and will be sure to include the audience in on our journey. Many times when you watch Godspell you feel left out in the audience. This production promises to do just the opposite.
What is your favorite song in the show and why?
The new arrangement of “Beautiful City” is breathtaking. I never truly heard the lyrics until now. The song is a message of hope. No matter what struggle you are going through, there is always a way to rebuild and start anew.
Which character in the show is most like you, and why?
Well since we are playing ourselves, I think ME!
What do you admire most about your fellow castmates’ performances?
Every person in this cast is unique, powerful, and captivating to watch. It feels so special to be around artists who know themselves so well, are not afraid to be silly, and who support each other.
How would you describe a Stephen Schwartz song and this score?
Schwartz has a certain quality that most theatre nerds can recognize immediately. The updated score breathes new life into these iconic songs.
What was the best advice or suggestions that Director Jason King Jones about laying your character and how has Musical Director Christopher Youstra helped you with your performance?
Jason is allowing this cast to find truth at every turn in our production. He is open to suggestions and discussion that ultimately will make this a very unique production of Godspell. I have worked with Chris for over ten years. He is so passionate about this piece that it’s infectious. You can’t help but want to work harder when you see this man in his element.
How would you describe Bryan Knowlton’s choreography and what was the hardest thing to learn?
Bryan’s choreography is smart, challenging, and authentic. I met him during A Chorus Line and couldn’t be prouder of all that he is accomplishing. Being the dance captain, the hardest part is learning everyone’s track!
Why should audience goers bring their families to see Godspell?
This piece is timeless and fun for all ages!
Godspell plays from February 4-March 1, 2015 at Olney Theatre Center – 2001 Olney-Sandy Spring Road, in Olney, MD. For tickets, call the box office at (301) 924-3400, or purchase them online.
Meet the Cast of ‘Godspell’ at Olney Theatre Center: Part 1: Jordan Coughtry.