- JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR – 50th Anniversary Tour
- Starlight Theatre – Kansas City, MO
- June 20th, 2023
Review by J.R. Deeter
What’s the Buzz? A Superstar for the 21st Century
2023 marks the 50th Anniversary of touring productions of “Jesus Christ Superstar,” and the current version presented at Starlight Theatre is a worthy take on the story of the Passion of Jesus Christ and his final week on earth as a man.
The talented cast, including Jack Hopewell as Jesus and Faith Jones as Mary, were very good, but in my opinion the two best performances were delivered by Elvie Ellis in the role of Judas, who gives an animated and passionate portrayal of the quintessential betrayer, and Grant Hodges booming voice as Caiaphas, the Jewish High Priest.
Musically, the well-known Andrew Lloyd Webber/Tim Rice score and songs flow, featuring a heavy emphasis on electric guitar over the lyrics which sometimes made it difficult to hear the words at times, the exception being during Jones’ acceptable performance of “I Don’t Know How to Love Him.” Unfortunately, Jones’ version pales in comparison with Yvonne Elliman’s emotion-packed rendition on the original soundtrack album, though to be fair, no one ever will.
With a run time of just over 90 minutes, the pace is very quick as the story moves from one scene into another. The choreography is excellent, with the ensemble cast moving fluidly about the stage with moves that gave the audience an exhaustive workout just watching.
On a scale of zero to five, “Jesus Christ Superstar” receives four stars.