Monday, December 27

Andrew Lloyd Webber World Arena Tour of Jesus Christ Superstar planned for next year

According to an interview in today’s Telegraph Andrew Lloyd Webber is planning a world arena tour of the rock opera of Jesus Christ Superstar which he wrote with Sir Tim Rice in 1970.

He wants the work "to go back to its rock roots. Every major artist I've spoken to has said they want to be in it. I'm not going to name names, but I'm getting demo tapes from some of the top artists in the world. It's extraordinary”.

It’s a very demanding score vocally with the parts of Judas and Jesus requiring very strong voices with exceptional ranges.  I last saw the show at London’s Lyceum in 1996 with Ramon Tikaram and Steve Balsamo in these roles respectively.

In 2004 it was restaged for a UK tour which Bill Kenwright took on the road with Glenn Carter as Jesus and pop singer James Fox as Judas. It was scheduled to end in December of that year, but its success resulted in it begin extended until August 2005.

I think Lloyd Webber’s plans for an arena tour are very exciting as the rock musical could be really spectacular on a large stage.  In the UK Jeff Wayne’s The War of the Worlds starring Jason Donovan and Rhydian Roberts has just ended after rave reviews and the Arena Tour of Batman the Musical  is due to start at the MEN Arena in Manchester on 24th July, 2011.

The plan is that Jesus Christ Superstar plays 200 arenas in America with its route already in the planning stages.  The Lord then wants to take it on a world tour playing at O2 Arena in England.

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