'Superstar' a rocking take on the Passion

DeKALB – Stage Coach Players opens its 67th season on Thursday, March 14 with a production of rock opera “Jesus Christ Superstar” by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice. Performances will be at 7:30 p.m. March 14-16 and 21-23 and 2 p.m. March 17, 23 and 24 at Stage Coach Theater, 126 S. Fifth St. in DeKalb.

“Jesus Christ Superstar” has been a Broadway favorite since the 1970s. Its thrilling score includes such memorable hits as “I Don’t Know How to Love Him.” Contemporary attitudes and sensibilities pervade the lyrics and references to modern life are scattered throughout the show.

“One of the most difficult aspects of directing this show is the fact that the subject of religion is intensely personal, and each person has his/her own thoughts regarding the life and death of Jesus,” director Jan Kuntz said.

The musical is set during the last week of Jesus’ life. It begins with the preparation for the arrival of Jesus and his disciples in Jerusalem, and ends with the Crucifixion. A large part of the plot focuses on the personal and political struggles between Jesus Christ (Gavin Wilson) and Judas Iscariot (Ryan Morton), who is depicted as a tragic figure dissatisfied with the direction in which Jesus steers his disciples.

The cast includes Jacqueline Schultz as Mary Magdalene, John McNally as Pontius Pilate, Dan Hyde as Herod, Terry Racine as Peter and Thomas, Tim Karkowski as Simon, Frank Judd as Matthew, Doug Michaels as Andrew, Josh Smith as James, the son of Zebedee, Dick Christensen as John, Jacob Rhoads as Philip, Hayden Perkins as Bartholomew, and Taylor Roose as James, the son of Alphaeus. Rounding out the ensemble cast are 25 vocalists steered by musical director Judy O’Connor.

‘Jesus Christ Superstar’

7:30 p.m. March 14-16 and 21-23
2 p.m. March 17, 23 and 24
Stage Coach Theater
126 S. Fifth St., DeKalb
Adults $15, children $12
815-758-1940 or

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