Jesus Christ Superstar – King’s Theatre, Glasgow

Reviewer: Lauren Humphreys

Music: Andrew LLoyd-Webber

Lyrics: Tim Rice

Director: Timothy Sheader

Choreographer: Drew McOnie

Finally, the rest of the UK gets the chance to see the Olivier Award-Winning re-imagination by Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre, of Jesus Christ Superstar.

Revolutionary when it was first released as a concept album in 1970, it is still astonishing that a musical about the Passion of Christ would break records around the world and remain one of the best-loved shows of all time.

Seen through the eyes of Judas, it re-tells the story of the last few weeks of Jesus’ life.

The production licks along at a fantastic pace under the direction of Timothy Sheader. The tight direction breathes new life into the work. Drew Mconie’s choreography is fantastically energetic and modern. The set, adapted from the Open Air version is simplistic, but effective and the costumes contemporised versions of Middle Eastern garb. The use of on-stage microphones, gives the production a gig-like, rock-y feel. The entire staging is phenomenally effective.

Essential to the success of any production is the central casting of Jesus and Ian McIntosh is a star (not unexpected as he’s a stand-out in everything he appears in). His soaring, powerful vocals and intense but sensitive acting bring a relatable human aspect to a revered, mythologised figure. McIntosh is ably supported by a supremely and universally talented cast: Hannah Richardson is a fine-voiced Mary who radiates a calm inner strength; Shem Omari James is an effective Judas, especially in his higher range. Jad Habchi’s Caiaphas, Matt Bateman’s Annas and Ryan O’Donnell’s Pilate are all knock-out as is the actor performing Simon Zealotes who unfortunately isn’t identified in the cast notes. Julian Clary as Herod, also delivers solid-gold camp in the musicals only moment of light relief.

This is a first class production, with exceptional quality in every aspect of its creation. Don’t miss this if you can, it is an absolute privilege to watch.

Runs until 21 October 2023 | Image: Contributed

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The Reviews Hub - Scotland

The Scotland team is under the editorship of Lauren Humphreys. The Reviews Hub was set up in 2007. We aim to review all professional types of theatre, whether that be Commercial, Repertory or Fringe as well as Comedy, Music, Gigs etc.

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  1. This production was amazing. Not seen for many years but can say I was captivated. So emotive. Sadly many of the audience didn’t seem to know the ‘story’ ? It was sad???? Well yes it would be. Julien Clary was perfect Herod……the light entertainment before the crux of the ‘story’. Wish I could see again.

  2. This was a very different staging from what I have seen in the past. Fantastic dancing and singing and all the cast and musicians are to be congratulated apart from Julien Clary, what a waste of space he was, a bowl of boiled cabbage could have put on a better performance. I have never, in the almost 50yrs of going to see this production, seen a worse Herod. He made no attempt to sing, be camp, ironic or anything, it was rubbish. I would say go and enjoy the show but don’t go to see Clary because he adds nothing to this production.

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