Jesus Christ Superstar – Arena Spectacular kicks off its Australian Tour in Perth tomorrow night before heading to Adelaide, Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne.
Produced in Australia by The Really Useful Group and Frontier Touring The Arena Spectacular arrives in Australia after a sold out tour of the United Kingdom in 2012.
The Australian production will star three of the original UK cast including former Spice Girl Melanie C as Mary Magdelene and Ben Forster in the role of Jesus. Forster won the role after winning the reality television show “Superstar” which saw the UK public vote to decide who would play the role of Jesus. Perth born Tim Minchin assumes the role of Judas Iscariot.
Minchin is the UK’s hottest Australian musical theatre export at the moment having written the score for The Royal Shakespeare Company’s Matilda. The musical is currently playing in London and recently opened in New York where it has received 12 Tony Award nominations, including best musical.
Australian personality Andrew O’Keefe, from Channel Seven’s Deal or No Deal, assumes the role of King Herod while Jon Stevens will play Pontius Pilate. Stevens played Judas Iscariot in the 1992 Australian production starring John Farnham as Jesus and Kate Ceberano as Mary Magdalene. It ran for 82 performances and played to over 980,000 people.
It is rather fitting that Jesus Christ Superstar – Arena Spectacular is the first musical to play at the new Perth Arena as it was one of the last musicals to play at the Perth Entertainment Centre before its closure in 2002.
Australian audiences are enthusiastic about the production with tickets selling out within hours of going on sale. Promoters have announced additional shows in most touring cities recently adding a third and final show in Perth and Brisbane.
Jesus Christ Superstar – Arena Spectacular
May 31 – June 2 – Perth – Perth Arena
June 4 – June 5 – Adelaide – Entertainment Centre
June 7 – June 9 – Sydney – Entertainment Centre
June 11 – June 12 / June 18 – Brisbane – Entertainment Centre
June 14 – June 16 – Melbourne – Rod Laver Arena