Letter to the Editor

River Campus show was disappointment

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

When is a modern spin on a classic piece a bad idea?

After watching Jesus Christ Superstar performed at the River Campus, I believe reinventing a long cherished musical should be handled with respect and good taste, both of which were lacking in this performance. Upon reading Jon Rust's article anticipating this rock opera being performed locally, and the nostalgia he held for the show, I was thrilled to revisit the music of my childhood. I also enjoyed the movie, television production, and performance at Fox Theatre.

Despite the warning for audiences 13 and older, I thought I knew the controversies I was signing myself and my teenagers up to see. My mother wasn't going to miss the best musical to come from her generation! Instead, I left cringing with embarrassment, both for my teens and my mother's generation. We came to rock and swoon to the music, but only noticed the talent of these amazing young performers if we closed our eyes and listened.

I understand the director was trying to make it relevant for 2018, but instead of art, it felt immature and vulgar: a masterpiece vandalized with spray paint and gaudy jewelry. Shock theatrics are typically used by people who want to distract from lack of talent. Instead, these performers had incredible talent, yet I was too distracted by the visual story to enjoy. In the future, I hope to have more understanding of the added "art" before purchasing my ticket. I felt hoodwinked.

KRISTA BAKER, Cape Girardeau