Jesus Christ Superstar, and have seen it several times, in several venues, with several different casts.
The latest show is by far the most spectacular I have seen.
It started with a big build up, I found myself hooked on the ITV reality show, ITV Superstar. Watching 'religiously' each week, to see who would win. The winner Ben Forster would not have been my choice, but having seen him in the live show, he fitted the bill.
I think I spotted a few (?) of the other contestants among the performers on stage, Jeff Anderson, at least!
What better build up to a show, than to have an elimination programme for the star, and get weeks of free advertising, surely everyone who watched the TV show wanted to go and see the live show.
The tickets were pricey (around £70), the venue, Cardiff Motorpoint Areana, was packed. This was the second night it was running.
The show was performed in modern day style, with back film of the recent protests against capitalism, and the 'Occupy cities - reclaim the street's, protests', and the performers dressed in 'grungy' protester style clothing- parka's, dreadlocks, ripped, layered clothes etc. At first I expected them to get changed into traditional costume, but soon realised the whole show was being performed in this style, so accepted it and relaxed about it.
It was very well performed. The dancers were incredible, the one nearest us circled and contorted while on one hand, and flipped and twirled, displaying amazing muscle strength. The Choreography was well done well, the stage was busy and captivating. The special effects were stunning. The lead performers gave a good show - Mel C (as Mary), not the best vocalist, was OK (certainly not Yvonne Elliman standard, but OK for a live show), The priests sang well, Caiaphas with the deep voice, and the others kept to the original sounds. It was good to hear the familiar songs sang in the familiar way. The soundtrack was kept to the original, and I appreciated that. Ben, as Jesus, was good, although seemed at times lacked a bit of acting skill, however, it was Tim Minchin, as Judas, who stole the show. He was truly amazing, wonderful, charismatic, enchanting, believable. He has an incredible presence, and I'm so glad he was in the show, he really lifted the show to an amazing theatrical experience. He's super cool too!
I left the arena with my head buzzing with the wonderful songs from the show, feeling uplifted and entertained. I love Jesus Christ Superstar, and I'm so glad it's been resurrected. Catch it if you can, otherwise wait for the release of a DVD from the show, I'll certainly be ordering a copy!