NP Community Playhouse to Present ‘Jesus Christ Superstar’

Posted 9 months ago

By Scott Carlson

Jesus Christ Superstar Logo ApprovedThe third production of the 2013/2014 Season at the North Platte Community Playhouse, Jesus Christ Superstar, opens Saturday February 8, 2014, with ticket sales beginning Monday, February 3.

Jesus Christ Superstar is a “rock opera” and a dramatized version of the last seven days in the life of Jesus of Nazareth, beginning with the preparation for the arrival of Jesus and his disciples in Jerusalem and ending with the crucifixion. Well-known songs from the production include, I Don’t Know How to Love Him,” and “Superstar.” It was the first musical by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice to be produced for the professional stage, and it debuted on Broadway in October 1971.

Jesus Christ Superstar first came to major theatres when it debuted on Broadway in October 1971 at the Mark Hellinger Theatre in New York.  The Broadway production ran for 720 performances, and Andrew Lloyd Webber won the prestigious Drama Desk Award as Most Promising Composer for Jesus Christ Superstar in 1972.

Less than 12 months after the Broadway show opened, the rock spectacle went to London, exploding onto the West End at the Palace Theatre in August 1972 in a hugely successful production directed by Jim Sharman and starring Paul Nicholas singing the part of Jesus.

Arriving in London that same year for the UK premiere of his ‘Fifteenth Symphony’, Dmitri Shostakovich asked to see a performance of Jesus Christ Superstar.  He was so impressed by what he heard and saw that he went back the following night to see it again, commenting that he would have liked to try some of the instruments.

By 1980, after 3,358 performances, Jesus Christ Superstar had become the longest running musical in West End history at the time.

Two decades later, Jesus Christ Superstar received its first blessing from the Vatican when a production by Massimo Romeo Piparo’s Peep Arrow company was endorsed by the Vatican’s official 2000 Jubilee Programme.  Songs from the show were performed in front of Pope John Paul II in Rome during the Jubilee in May of that year.

Performances will be held February 8, 9, 14, 15 and 16, with the Friday and both Saturday performances beginning at 8:00 p.m., and Sunday matinees at 2:00 p.m.

Tickets can be purchased at the NPCP office Monday through Friday from Noon-5:00, online at www.northplattecommunityplayhouse.com or at the door prior to each performance.  Admission is $15.00 for Adults and $8.00 for children and students.

Jesus Christ Superstar is produced through a special arrangement with Rodgers and Hammerstein, Inc., and is made possible, in part, by the support of the Nebraska Arts Council and the Nebraska Cultural Endowment of the Arts.

The production is directed by Lori Evans with Music Director Glenn Van Velson.

 

The Cast

 Judas – Mark Cullinan

Jesus- Mike Crom

Mary Magdalene – Ashley Aloi

Peter – Brad Godfrey

Annas – Matt Pederson

Caiaphas – Andrew Lee

Priest – Malachi Murtaugh

Pilate – Jim Shreck

Herod – Tom Clements

Men’s Chorus – Sam Fornander, Jared Gafke, Philip Ryan, Wayne Stafford & Seth Vapenik

Women’s Chorus – Suzanne Deardoff, Britnee Fear, Peggy Fox, Sue McKain, Traci Sawyer, Traci Shavlik, Bea Webster & Tiffany Wood