The musical "Jesus Folk" was introduced during the finale of the
British Congress on 10th July 1972, with a full version presented at Fairfield
Halls, Croydon on 25th January 1973
The following quote is taken from the original script:
As an art form the 'musical' is the freest of them all. There are no specified moulds into which the material must be poured. Each musical is a separate creation. As Oscar Hammerstein II once put it: 'It is nonsense to say what a musical should or should not be. It should be anything it wants to be. . . . There is only one absolutely indispensable element that a musical must have. It must have music.'
'Jesus Folk' has music. Plenty of it. But where it differs from other musicals is that instead of having one continuous story line, a number of separate incidents are portrayed which are linked together by what they each add to the central theme.
'Jesus Folk' deals with the most basic of evangelical themes: the transformation that Christ brings to the life of His followers. A number of the original Jesus Folk-those that walked with Him on earth-tell of the change that Christ brought to their lives, and these stories are linked with modern-day situations-all of it in song, of course.
Though the musical flows as a continuous whole it does, in fact, consist of six separate sequences which can be named after the Biblical character portrayed or hinted at, namely: The Man with the Paralysed Hand, Lazarus, Philip, The Demoniac (Legion), Zacchaeus, and Peter. In addition there is a theme song used to open and end the musical, and two songs dealing with Christ's stilling of the storm used to open Part II of the musical.
The following notes are based on the original production of the musical at the Fairfield Concert Hall, Croydon, on 25th January 1973, and are provided as a guide-line for producers-a guide-line which they must feel free to use, adapt or ignore.
"The stage was large 56 ft. wide, the up-stage was raised by about a foot with yet another raked portion where the cross was standing. Seven mikes were used. Six mikes on stands-three at the front and three further back-and one hand mike. The mikes were frequently moved and those at the rear were often used pointing forward in order to pick up singing presented with backs to the audience. The moving of the mikes was all part of the cast's work. The cast numbered 56 and the girls outnumbered the boys by 2 to 1. Equal number of boys and girls is preferable. A small, movable, circular dais about eighteen inches high (like bass drum on its side) was on stage throughout and used for various purposes."