Jesus Christ Superstar, by Ventnor Theater Group – Isle of Wight – A review by Kai Davis.

 

On Wednesday the 24th of April, a short time after the Easter holidays, I took my stepson, who’s 13 to see Jesus Christ Superstar by the talented Ventnor Theater Group at the Ventnor Winter Gardens… Now, those who know me, know that musicals aren’t normally ‘My thing’… However, when I was invited to attend the opening night I was actually really excited for the evening ahead.

The atmosphere grew as Cam (stepson) and I entered the Winter Gardens and the music was playing as last-minute stage alterations were taking place. We watched as excited performers rushed around making their own last minute preparations. As everyone took to their seats, the music lulled and the lights dropped, we knew it was time.

 

 

The opening scene – A quiet few moments as the dull lighting shines upon two Roman Centurions, standing guard mid-stage…

Moments later, the music builds, and the stage comes alive with a dramatic dance performance, the lighting, music, dance routine and costumes are all on point and looking and sounding great!

Right from the get-go, the evening was full of music, song, bright colours and of course fantastic acting and performances from both the singers and dancers.

 

 

 

 

The fascinating Love – Hate then Love again relationship between Jesus and Judas was incredibly played out on stage by Nathan Meller (Jesus) and Steve Jones (Judas.)

Of course – Hoping not to spoil the ending for everyone, but Judas succumbed to the pressure, money and of course jealousy and made the hard decision to betray Jesus.

Steve Jones was able to portray the difficulty of his actions and decisions with his absolutely amazing performance… You could hear the pain and dispair in Steve’s (Judas’) singing and see the pressure he was under.

Well done to both of these fantastic actors for their incredibly moving performance!

This was, of course, a musical, and the singers did their part well! Absolutely flawless voices, performances and acting all rolled into one!

I’m not one for multi-tasking so I couldn’t even imagine how difficult it is to do just one of those things, but the ability to roll acting, singing and dancing all into one? Wow! The entire stage was alive with activity, it was hard to know where to look at times and to take in all of the performance, colour, light, music and so much more was a mind-blowing and wonderful experience!

 

But, most importantly, what did the 13-year-old think? … “It was nearly as good as Titanic the Musical, I liked it!” … Now, believe me, this was high praise in deed!

 

 

 

My personal favourite scene? It had to be the part where Jesus was being interrogated by a rather colourful King Herod along with his ‘Night club’ themed setting and dancers… To hear the crowd erupt with laughter as King Herod came on stage… What a wonderful scene, well done to Joe Plumb who Played the part of King Herod incredibly well!

 

 

 

I could continue to rave about the entire production, but all I have to say really is just how well the entire cast performed… The stage they work with may be small, but they use it incredibly well. The small crowd who attended the private opening evening all seemed to really enjoy themselves, there were cheers, whistles, applause and even the odd boo! I wish all involved the best of luck for the rest of their production nights… Visit the Ventnor Theater Group on line to find out more. I won’t be telling you any more of what happens, you’ll just have to go and watch it yourselves!

 

You can also find up to date information on the groups Facebook page – Click here – There are still tickets available, so grab them while you can!

 

So, from Cam and myself, we fully recommend spending an evening with your family watching this fantastic production!

 

Thank you to photographers – Jamie Mallon and Mike Wilson for the use of their images.