“JESUS CHRIST – SUPERSTAR” – A MASTERPIECE BECOMING A LEGEND
Rock opera Jesus Christ – superstar “Jesus Christ – Superstar” – one of the most famous and greatest rock operas in the world, with a rather long history, which has become a masterpiece and legend in the world of music.
Rock opera became the first musical of Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice on the professional stage. And perhaps no other rock opera has undergone so many changes.
“Jesus Christ is a superstar” – the story of the creation of a rock opera
The musical originally came out in the form of an album in 1970, where Ian Gillan, the vocalist of the so-called “golden line-up” Deep Purple, played the lead role. The “live” concert in July 1971 was so successful that it was decided to record and release a record, which was subsequently sold in millions of copies. Until now, the young composer Andrew Lloyd Webber almost immediately became a celebrity. On October 12, 1971, the premiere of the expanded stage version of the rock opera Jesus Christ the Superstar took place on Broadway. Young authors were shocked by the success of the production. Already in August 1972, the show opened in London.
And in 1973, the rock opera was filmed. The film was shot in Israel, in the very places where the events shown in the film took place. Over the 40 years of the existence of the rock opera “Jesus Christ – Superstar”, the production of the show took place on the stages of 17 countries. In Russia, for the first time in Russian, a rock opera took place on the stage of the St. Petersburg State Theater “Rock Opera”.
Even the authors themselves did not expect such a tremendous success. Unlike the audience, critics did not accept the performance. Journalists of music publications, representatives of business magazines, observers of prestigious opera magazines, authors of women’s magazines – the press in England cut off the phone of David Land, producer of young talents. But two weeks after the premiere of “Jesus Christ – Superstar” was in the lead at once in three charts !!!
“Jesus Christ is a Superstar” was put wherever possible, and not in one version (including, as already noted, in Russia). The adaptation of the rock opera was no less successful. After a while, the noise about the rock opera subsided, and the film was forgotten for a while. But more recently, the production was taken off the shelves. And “Jesus” is once again collecting full houses on Broadway. A new Broadway production was created and a studio recording was made with new texts, where the role of Jesus is played by Steve Balsamo, and the role of Herod is played by Alice Cooper. A little bit of editing and texts. Tim Rice corrected some rhymes to more successful ones, in his opinion. In addition, a new film adaptation of the rock opera Jesus Christ Superstar was recorded, directed by Gail Edwards. The main difference between the new film adaptation is a fully studio recording. In general, the recording turned out to be somewhat tougher than the first film, but no less interesting.
“Jesus Christ is a superstar” – the plot of the rock opera
The basis for the plot of the rock opera was the gospel narratives, events that occurred at the dawn of the Christian Era. The storyline covers the period from the entry of Jesus into Jerusalem until his death at Calvary, the last seven days of the life of Jesus of Nazareth, from the moment he appeared on Palm Sunday and until his execution by order of Pontius Pilate. Jesus realizes what lies ahead, but does not quite understand the purpose of his own sacrifice, although he refers to this as a fate that cannot be changed. Jesus suffers from this knowledge; he wants to understand why God the Father sends him to death.
In the interpretation of the librettist, Judas Iscariot did not intend to betray the “teacher”, it was just by the will of evil fate that he was to commit betrayal. He does not like what is happening, he thinks that Jesus is losing control over what is happening, that he is moving away from his own teachings. He believes that Jesus and his apostles are close to self-destruction. He wants to save Jesus from the crowd and himself, informs the authorities on Jesus, hoping that he will be isolated and thus saved. Judas does not hide his intentions: if Jesus is really the son of God, then he is able to foresee everything in advance, he understood what could happen and he himself determined him, Judah, to be the “damned for all time” role.