On stage in Medina College’s production of Jesus Christ Superstar are Laura Burnett as Mary Magdalene and Jack Roberts as Jesus. Picture by Peter Boam.
STAGE REVIEW THE young performers of Medina College who performed the smash musical, Jesus Christ Superstar, proved they have the potential to become superstars themselves one day.
Set in a world of protests, riots and political turmoil — using emotive news images projected onto large screens — the show got off to a good, sit-up-and-take-notice start.
Told entirely through songs and dialogue set to arguably Andrew Lloyd Webber’s most engaging music, with well-shaped lyrics by Tim Rice, Jesus Christ Superstar is loosely based on the Gospels’ accounts of the last week of the Messiah’s life.
The large ensemble all performed with enthusiasm and were well stage-managed, expertly executing dance sequences scattered throughout the show.
Jack Roberts, as Jesus, grew into the role as the show went on. He sang competently and led the line pretty well, excelling from Jesus’s trial to the crucifixion.
The crucifixion scene was an excellently conceived and atmospheric piece of theatre — beautifully lit, dramatic and with a mechanical cross that raised him high. Hats off to Jack, who put all his trust in a cross that did tend to wobble.
Some of the support performances were splendid, particularly that of Laura Burnett, as Mary Magdalene, with the delightful song, I Don’t Know How To Love Him.
It was impressive to see the college’s headteacher Nathan Thomas lead from the front by taking a role in the show, as the antagonistic high priest Caiaphas, which I’m sure helped to inspire the students to perform at their best.
The packed audience showed great appreciation for the show throughout, which ended with a long, standing ovation.