Children of Eden

At a time when humanity is in desperate need of a spiritual vision to replace that of material accumulation and over-consumption, the Arvada Center offers the regional premiere of Stephen Schwartz's musical epic, Children of Eden.

Based on the first nine chapters of the Book of Genesis from the Old Testament, the story, by John Caird, takes an enlightened view of the goings-on of Adam and Eve, Cain and Abel, Noah, and their families. This generous interpretation, added to the multi-cultural casting, is the basis for an uplifting and imploring message: only by coming together as brothers and sisters are we going to be able to survive and flourish.

Part pageant, part revival, part parable, Children of Eden uses a blend of gentle voices, a playful sense of humor, and simple yet effective costuming to achieve its message without the overbearing self-righteousness that accompanies so many interpretations of this ancient story.

James Alexander, Steven Bogard, and Gabrielle Goyett, as Father, Adam, and Eve, provide an accessible, human-scale chemistry that keeps the over-arching themes within reach. The rest of the ensemble is equally gifted.

While Schwartz's music varies from inspired spirituals to run-of-the-mill pop-rock, the voices are excellent throughout, and never lacking in sincerity. The Arvada Center's Children of Eden possesses a message true to the spirit of the season and the wherewithal to deliver it. It runs through December 29th. 720-898-7200.

Bob Bows


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