Sunday, August 26, 2012

Too much heaven on their minds

Jesus Christ Superstar in concert, 24.8.2012
Sibelius hall, Lahti
Hannu Lepola, Sami Hintsanen, Saara Aalto, Juha Kotilainen, Sam Huber, Anssi Valikainen and the the ensemble

I have many feelings when people say me something about Jesus andreligion as I'm an atheist. I had tried to listen to the music of Jesus Christ Superstar earlier but because I had no idea what was exactly happening, I didn't find it so amazing. So when I bought my ticket to see the concert version I just thought that maybe now it's time to try to understand this musical.
I love Andrew Lloyd Webber's musicals, but after seeing some parts of JCS on YouTube I wasn't so sure I would like this. I'm glad it proved me wrong. Musical about the life of Jesus and his death doesn't sound so interesting to me, because these things have never interested me.

There was only two weak links in the cast: Saara Aalto as Mary Magdalene and Sami Hintsanen as Judas. Both of them have good voices, but Aalto is more a singer than an actress so she wasn't so good. Sami Hintsanen's voice impressed me, it was better than I thought it would be but he didn't make me feel for Judas at all. Hopefully he will show me his acting skills when I'll see him in the Blood Brothers in few weeks.
Hannu Lepola was amazing as Jesus, I loved his Gethesemane, it was only time during the show when I noticed tears on my cheeks.
But if there wa sone who really got me, it was Anssi Valikainen as Pilate. His voice was great and you could see how he struggled inside while making hard decisions. Great acting skills and his voice was amazing!

This show was great and showed me a different side of he story I've known for a long time but never been really into it. This was just a concert version, so no big sets or anything. Hopefully this musical will come back to Finland as a full staged production.


  1. Hear, hear, the lady spoke my thoughts exactly! I'd like - if I may - to add a few further observations, though. Especially I'd like to point out the "Hosanna/Simon Zealotes" sequence which showcased the unquestionable talent of the student ensemble and that young fellow who did the part of the Simon. A very nice rendition indeed.

    Also, I have never felt too comfortable about the way Herod is portrayed in JCS but I guess Sam Huber did the best one could with the given second-rate variety act source material he got to work with.

    And a special appreciation must go for those two young ladies who appeared as Roman soldiers - they were really mean and bad mamas! :-)


    1. I have nothing to say after this, everything I forgot to mention is said in here.

  2. I've got a bit same feelings about JCS than you had. I recently re-watched the DVD and found myself liking some of the music and the ideas, but something in it is not me. Had the concert been closer to where I live, I would have checked it out, but so far JCS is not a musical I'd travel for. ALW is not my favourite musical composer, but I've recently started to get into his older work and am pretty hooked to Evita. I recognize the significance of JCS to the whole musical genre and appreciate it, but when it comes to personal taste, I feel something lacks in the musical. I'd really like to see some theatre doing a good whole production of JCS in Finland and I wonder why it isn't happened more often here, but maybe it's the religion and on the other hand the musical might be too... something for the grannies (or so they fear) that are theatre's main source of income.