Jesus Christ Superstar Review

jcsJesus Christ Superstar – or Judas Iscariot Superstar?

Andrew Lloyd Webber’s rock opera spectacular, Jesus Christ Superstar, was given new life by an impressive cast on the Adelaide leg of its Australian Tour.

Forty years after its Australian debut, the show has been re-vamped with hard to miss comparisons between social media, the US government and the 2011 Occupy movement.

The high-tech backdrop in this multimedia extravaganza was a continuous display of CCTV footage, social media ‘tweets’ and news headlines.  These elements gave a good background to the story and set the scene for Laurence Connor’s contemporary take on the show, whilst keeping all the songs and music from the original production.

Best known for his comedic music styling, Tim Minchin delivered an unforgettable performance as a haunting and thought-provoking Judas. Minchin showcased both his impressive vocal and acting skills, shining during his performance of ‘Blood Money’. He  also delivered an exciting and powerful performance of ‘Superstar’ accompanied by an erotic choir of angels.

Understudy Rory Taylor made his Australian debut in the production as Jesus, filling in for British actor and singer, Ben Forster.  Taylor was acknowledged for his fantastic vocal range with a standing ovation for his outstanding performance.

Former Spice Girl Melanie Chisolm dazzled the crowd as Mary Magdalene in her first ever Australian tour. Chisolm’s performance of ‘I don’t know how to love him’ was breathtaking, as was her entire performance, proving this Spice Girl has plenty more to offer in the world of musical theatre.

Deal or No Deal’s Andrew O’Keefe made his presence felt with his all-singing, all-dancing reality television host take on King Herod, not to mention his red crushed velvet suit. O’Keefe had just the one number, which managed to include a subtle ‘Booyeah!’, a popular move amongst the Deal or No Deal fans in the audience.

Without dialogue between songs, it may be hard for some to precisely follow the show at some points, but this is a minor issue.  With the impressive performances from all cast members, including Jesus Christ Superstar alumni Jon Stevens it is easy to see why multiple shows have been added to the Australian tour.

Jesus Christ Superstar continues its Australian tour with shows in Sydney and Melbourne, finishing on June 18  in Brisbane.

Published on OnTheRecord:
http://www.ontherecord-unisa.com.au/?p=5308

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