Jesus Christ Superstar is a rock opera that features sung music (by masterminds Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber) throughout its entire production and is celebrating its 50th anniversary! The musical revolves around the life of Jesus Christ leading up to his death on the cross and focuses on the relationship between him and his disciples, specifically focusing on the traitor Judas.
The show features powerhouse vocals, particularly from its lead characters Jesus (Jack Hopewell) and Judas (Elvie Ellis), who belt, screech, and squeal numerous high notes throughout the run time. Additionally, I believe most people aren’t typically swayed by low bassy notes, but the bass vocals sung by Caiaphas (Isaac Ryckeghem) were sung so incredibly low and with so much stamina and authority, that I was thoroughly impressed.
The chorus of “Superstar” is what will be stuck in your head as you exit the theater. Outside of that, there weren’t too many other songs that were as memorable. Nonetheless, the unique rock opera has many impressive vocals and anthems sprinkled throughout its brisk 90 minute runtime that I believe most will find the show to be entertaining and intriguing, as they reflect on conversations that may have been had with these iconic biblical characters. Also, the crucifixion depiction will most likely be an emotional scene for some audiences.
Production design and costume design (by Tom Scutt) are minimal (there’s no drastic set changes as the set is based on the original 1970s design and clothing choices are rather simple). The choreography by Drew McOnie boasts synthesized energy that was riveting to see and the lighting design by Lee Curan adds to the “rock anthem” atmosphere that these characters and songs bring forth. Director Timothy Sheader has put together a competent unique show that will be cherished by many.
Jesus Christ Superstar will be playing at the Hobby Center in Houston, Texas until Sunday, January 22nd, 2023 and then will continue on tour.
For more information, visit https://www.jesuschristsuperstar.com/
|Final Verdict:||Powerhouse vocals sprinkled throughout a 90 minute upbeat production allow Jesus Christ Superstar to still work in 2023.|