The last time I saw Jesus Christ Superstar, it was 1973 and in a movie theater. I wasn’t Catholic and the only thing that really interested me was the music. I played that double album more times than probably any album I owned.
When the opportunity to see it live at the Lyric Opera House presented itself, I was thrilled. I knew my perspective of the storyline would be much different. This time, I had an emotional connection to the story of Jesus, his disciples and Jesus’ last days.
Seeing Jesus Christ Superstar at the Lyric Opera in Chicago was a wonderful experience. Emotionally, I was pulled into the storyline. I paid attention to what was going on and thought about the Gospel stories I had heard and read so many times over the years since my conversion. The Lyric’s staging, production and costumes of this play are unique and modern. The vocals were outstanding!
All the characters struggle with their love for Jesus and his teachings in their own way. Peter loves Jesus, but his denial of Jesus comes from self-preservation. Judas believes the “kingdom” they are building is here on earth and not after our death. Mary Magdalene eventually reconciles her confused feelings toward Jesus, but only after his death (which is not shown).
After a forty plus year gap, I was so happy to see this production. Though I have always loved the music, the portrayal of those in the Gospel drew me deeper into my faith.
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