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An engaging and successful musical 
not to be missed

NOMINEES & AWARDS

12 Nominees and 4 Awards at Boh Cameronian Arts Awards 2020

Euphrasia the Musical was nominated for 12 Categories in Musical Theatre at the Boh Cameronian Arts Awards 2020 and was the winner of Best Choreographer, Best Performance by an Ensemble, Best Sound Design and Best Lighting Design.

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The Story

In modern day Kuala Lumpur, a rescued sex worker named Josephine meets an unexpected guide in the form of St. John Eudes, who shows her how the unlikeliest of people can make the greatest of changes in a positive way. Follow Josephine as she takes a trip across time and space to 19th century France, where she peeks into the life of Rose Pelletier – a young girl growing up on the island of Noirmoutier, in a time when France is still coming to terms with the aftershocks of the French Revolution – and her journey towards becoming Mother Mary Euphrasia, the foundress of an international congregation that promotes rights and empowerment of women, girls and the marginalised to this day.

In the first Act, Josephine and St. John Eudes follow Rose through the early stages of her life, witnessing how she seemed to be a contradiction to the people around her. The tragic loss of her parents led to Rose being placed in a boarding school where she had childhood dreams of being a nun. Her penchant for bending the rules led her to the Refuge, a shelter run by the Sisters of Our Lady of Charity of the Refuge, which was, in fact, founded by Fr John Eudes. Taking on a challenge from her headmistress, Rose eventually became a nun in this congregation, adopting the name Sister Mary Euphrasia and soon Mother Mary Euphrasia when she is appointed as Mother Superior of the Refuge. Mother Euphrasia sees great potential in uniting the various convents operating independently throughout France through establishing a Generalate, but meets with initial resistance from some of her sisters and the Archbishop. With support from her closest mission partners, Count Augustine and Countess D’Andigne and other friends, she is finally given the approval needed by the Pope to set up the Generalate.

In the second Act, Josephine and St. John Eudes continue to follow Mary Euphrasia and her friends as they help the poor and marginalised. Euphrasia faces problems as the sisters of the Good Shepherd are bound to their convents under the rule of monastic enclosure, and Bishop Angelbault refuses to give them approval to leave. Mary Euphrasia and Count Augustine meet Ashura (representing many women who experience difficulties and who remain unnamed). She is a slave from the Congo, who they offer protection in their shelter. While Ashura is at first suspicious of their helping hand, Euphrasia wins her over with her sincerity. Euphrasia also has to deal with several problems, including the death of her close friends and a growing number of requests for assistance in the work that is needed to be done. When the Bishop continues to oppose her, she decides to build a tunnel for the nuns, to give them easy access to the mission field and to help them. Then it is time for goodbyes: Euphrasia must part with Ashura, who has been inspired by Euphrasia’s compassion and zeal and wishes to help others in different lands across the sea. Josephine is thus brought back to the present.

SR. JOAN LOPEZ

Executive Producer

“The Musical offers us an avenue to raise awareness about some of the issues that we are faced with in our current realities”

A message from Sr. Joan Lopez

Euphrasia – The Musical was first conceptualised in 2018 in conjunction with the 150th anniversary of the feast day of St. Mary Euphrasia Pelletier, the foundress of the Congregation of Our Lady of Charity of the Good Shepherd. A small group of us – the Good Shepherd sisters of Singapore-Malaysia – explored the idea of producing a live stage performance about the life and mission of St. Mary Euphrasia. Together with Dato’ Dr. Faridah Merican and Joe Hasham of KL PAC, Mia Palencia the composer of the music, Cheah UiHua and Terence Toh the scriptwriters, Dominic Luk the Music Director and Director, Nikki Palikat as St. Mary Euphrasia and many other talented persons, Euphrasia – The Musical made its first run with ten shows in Kuala Lumpur, Ipoh and Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, in 2019 and early 2020. 

Our intention was to make known this ordinary person who was able to live an extraordinary life with great passion and courage beginning from an early age in 18th century France. We also hoped that more people would come to know the Good Shepherd mission which is being carried out in Malaysia, Singapore and 70 other countries worldwide. 

All the shows played to full houses, and what followed were rave reviews of its poignant message of sacrifice, love and commitment to the service of the less fortunate members of society. After this great success in Malysia and the many request for a re-staging of the show, we decided to partner with the Good Shepherd International Foundation to present the musical globally and offer it to an international audience through online streaming from 2021 April 24 to June 30 to raise funds to support the Foundation in the continuation of Euphrasia’s mission today.

Euphrasia – The Musical offers us an avenue to raise awareness about some of the issues that we are faced with in our current realities, especially the issue of human trafficking which is also known as modern day slavery. Some aspects of the story and its characters who are fictional represent the women and girls whose stories will never be told or heard.

Mary Euphrasia often expressed her appreciation with these words, “Gratitude is the memory of the heart.” Firstly, we thank God for being with us on this journey of producing the show. We commend the very talented cast, musicians, production team and crew – all from the Malaysian performing arts scene. KUDOS! To all who supported us in this project; the Organising Committee, volunteers, partners, friends, and donors we express our heartfelt thanks.

We take this opportunity to wish you a memorable experience of an amazing story, Euphrasia – The Musical. May you be inspired TO GO OUT AND DO SOMETHING GOOD! 

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