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Midland Center Addresses Social Injustice in Upcoming Production of JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTARFor five decades, the story of Jesus has been sweeping the globe in Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice’s iconic rock opera, Jesus Christ Superstar, and now, Midland Center for the Arts is highlighting the relevancy of this centuries old story for Center Stage Theatre’s first production of the Center’s 50th Anniversary Celebration Season. The production, selected intentionally to commemorate both the production and Center’s coinciding anniversaries, will take place on the Huntington Bank Outdoor Stage August 20 – 29 for six performances.
“Theatre is a powerful vehicle to tell a story and spark conversation around important topics, and our production of Jesus Christ Superstar is no exception,” said director Emily Anderson. “We have designed this production to be set in modern times, showing parallels to current day social attitudes towards marginalized groups of people – and in the end, sparking dialogue on how Jesus and his apostles would look and respond today.”
Jesus Christ Superstar tells the story of the final days of Jesus Christ’s life, told through the eyes of his best friend and closest confidant, Judas. Loosely based on the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, this story is told entirely through song and explores the personal relationships and struggles between Jesus, Judas, Mary Magdalene, his disciples, his followers and the Roman Empire.
While the Center’s production will still feature classic songs like “I Don’t Know How to Love Him,” “Heaven on Their Minds,” “Gethsemane,” and the title song, it also will address these social injustices that are still prevalent today.
“Attempting to address these realities can be difficult, uncomfortable and intimidating – but our production team has not shied away from making a statement on how we treat the poor, LGBTQIA+ communities, and people of color in 2021,” added Anderson. “If you are a loyal fan of this phenomenal Broadway hit, you’ll love our interpretation. The music, the story and the message remain – and we are eager for audiences to continue the dialogue with us after the show.” Audiences are invited to join the creative team for a post-show discussion on the production and how the arts can address social change on each Saturday of the performance weekends.
Jesus Christ Superstar runs for six performances over two weekends starting August 20, 2021 on the Huntington Bank Outdoor Stage at Midland Center for the Arts. Tickets are available online at midlandcenter.org, at the Center Ticket Office, or by calling 989-631.8250.