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Play Review

Saturday, 23 March, 2013 9:56 AM

'The Cross and The Light' opens on Palm Sunday at Detroit's Music Hall

Photo credit: "The Cross and The Light"

The entire cast of "The Cross and The Light" at the Music Hall Center for the Performing Arts in Detroit.

 

by Gloria Rzucidlo
gloria1025@yahoo.com

 

 

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DETROIT -- The Music Hall Center for Performing Arts in downtown Detroit presents "The Cross and The Light," a musical adaptation of "The Passion of The Christ." It is a moving journey through the stations of the Cross depicting Christ's passion, death and resurrection. In addition, the risen Lord appears to his apostles and prepares them for Pentecost.

My husband and I were at the final dress rehearsal and preview night. We sat in the eighth row. There will be 11 performances beginning on Palm Sunday, March 24 to Easter Sunday, March 31.

The First Act consisted of 18 scenes. It began with an opening prayer and that was followed by Palm Sunday and the entire cast sang "Hosanna." Then, it was the Last Supper. The Apostles passed around the pita bread, which the represented the body of Jesus and the chalice. Then, they reenacted the first 13 Stations of the Cross. The entire First Act lasted one hour and 15 minutes and ended with Jesus dying on the cross. Then there was a fifteen minute intermission.

The Second Act featured nine scenes and lasted a half hour until the conclusion. The cast consisted of 45 actors, including Kenny Watson, famed Detroit vocalist who played Jesus. Brian Leduc played Peter, Julie Craigo played the Blessed Mother, Matthew Peckham played St. Thomas the Apostle and Gary Castaneda played Pontius Pilate. It began with the 14th Station of the Cross, which is when Jesus' body was placed in the tomb. After that, he rose from the dead during a reenactment of the Resurrection. In the last scene, the Lord sent the Holy Spirit during the First Pentecost.

Kelly Nieto, executive producer of "The Cross and The Light" said it took 13 years to get it here. Previously it was named "Living Stations." The musical was adapted from the books “The Stations of the Cross" with Pope John Paul II by Father Joseph Champlin and "The Stations of the Light" with Father John West. The music, lyrics and arrangements were created by Kelly Nieto and Nick Dalbis.

Since 2002, over 44,000 people have experienced Jesus' final hours in a personal and profound way. This performance is uplifting and will captivate audiences with its timeless biblical story. For those of you sitting in the first 10 rows, the music may be a little loud. I had to cover my eyes for a minute because of Jesus' blood-soaked body during the crucifixion scene.

OVERALL RATING: B

Tickets range from $35 to $100 and are on sale now at www.ticketmaster.com or call the Music Hall at 313-887-8501. Interested in booking a Group? Call our office today to begin working with a Group Sales professional to create a personalized experience for your guests. Contact Dan Angeski, Group Sales Director, at 734.788.7073 or email Groups@CrossAndLight.com. Discount tickets are available on March 26 for Student Day, March 27 for Senior Day and March 28 for Family Day (Buy Five Tickets Get One Free).

Related Stories: REVIEW: 'LeCage Aux Folles' is fabulous at Detroit's Fisher Theatre; REVIEW: 'The Lion King' is a big hit at the Detroit Opera House; Salt Lake City Surprise: 'The Book of Mormon' Thumps The Fisher in Detroit

 

Photo credit: "The Cross and The Light"

Scene 18: The Thirteenth Station - Jesus Dies on the Cross

 

Photo credit: "The Cross and The Light"

Scene 13: The Ninth Station: Jesus Encounters the Women of Jerusalem

 

Photo credit: "The Cross and The Light"

Scene 8: The Fifth Station - Jesus is Judged by Pilate

 

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