Risen Today

  • Cast Number: 25
  • Run-time: 45 minutes
  • Bible Reference: Luke 22-24

An easily staged Easter drama, could be done as a regular drama, Reader’s Drama, or all lines could be spoken offstage.
This drama covers the time following Palm Sunday through to the resurrection.


Bible Reference:           Luke 22-24


Cast:                As available, likely 20+ varies as many roles could be played by the same actor
Narrator (male)
Narrator (woman)
Child1  (male or female)

                        Child2  (male or female)
Disciples (12, includes those mentioned above)
Simon of Cyrene
Crowd, as available, male and female, including some children

Set:                 Scene 1 The Upper Room – bare stage
Scene 2 Calvary – bare stage
Scene 3 The Tomb – backdrop or set prop of tomb

Lighting:         spotlights or means of controlling and eliminating light


Sound:            as available, all or most could be pre-taped or offstage voices
Hymn “Jesus Christ Is Risen Today”


Costumes:       likely traditional


Props:             Water basin, towel, bread, cup for communion, cross


Special effects (SFX):   
Rooster crowing, hammer on steel, angry crowd, happy crowd, earthquake, cloth ripping


Special Instructions:    
actors must be told to mime (react) to the changing emotions and to act but not overact.
As is my habit, (or my hang-up) this drama has been written to show Jesus with his back to the audience, face obscured as much as is possible by a hood. I find that showing the face of Jesus (or God) creates more problems than necessary. For those who feel otherwise Jesus can be portrayed normally. However Jesus has a substantial number of lines therefore these couldn’t be spoken offstage if Jesus’ face is seen by the audience.


Time:              45


Sample of script:            


Scene 1 – Upper Room – bare stage


Narrator speaks in darkness


Narrator:           Having carefully researched and examined the life and death of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, I believe myself to be qualified to explain his works and his relevance.
Much has been written about the birth of Jesus and I choose not to duplicate those materials. Rather it is my hope, may God give me the skill and clarity of thought, that I might draw together the final hours of the earthly life of Jesus, and his final appearance before departing this planet.
We pick up the account at that point where Jesus and his many followers were travelling to Jerusalem, there to celebrate the Passover.
Upon entering the city they were treated like conquering heroes.
Crowds pressed in upon them, waving palm branches and shouting their hallelujah praises.


SFX:                jubilant crowd


Child1:             Hosanna!


Woman:           Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!


Child2:             Blessed is the King of Israel!


Narrator:           But no sooner than the triumphal shouting had passed away, there began rumblings of discontent.
The Jewish leaders feared that this itinerant pastor from Nazareth might upset the shaky relationship between them and their Roman occupiers. So Caiaphas and his underlings searched for an opportunity . .  and a collaborator.


Woman:           Judas of Kerioth, an insider among the followers of Jesus, for reasons known only to he and to God, approached the Sanhedrin, offering his services to assist in capturing Jesus.


Child1:             Judas Iscariot . . . and he a disciple!


Child2:             A traitor.


lights slowly up

in the following sequence the individual disciples will wander in from back of sanctuary, miming talking in small groups


Narrator:           Since it was the Passover, Jesus wished to share the Passover meal with his disciples.
Peter and John were sent ahead to locate the scene for the gathering and to prepare the meal.
The others followed, still euphoric from the experience of Palm Sunday, just a few days previous. They came individually, or in small numbers, the better to evade the prying eyes of the Sanhedrin.
And so it was that they met at the Upper Room, there to eat and to pray.


Peter:               Come, all of you, the feast has been prepared.


the disciples go to Upper Stage, sit on the floor

Jesus, wearing a hood which obscures his face, enters from an downstage location, keeps his head turned somewhat upstage so his face can’t be seen by the audience.

Jesus goes to center stage left position and pours a basin of water. Jesus invites each disciple in turn to come to have their feet washed. This can be done quickly and sensitively. Have disciple facing down stage somewhat to right of Jesus so that most of the audience can see the disciples face.

When it is Judas’ turn, hold the pose for a moment as Jesus looks directly up into Judas’ face, Judas looks away. After each actor has had feet washed they return to their position at the table.  However when Judas returns to upstage position have him at extreme right hand side, somewhat separated from the other disciples.


Jesus:               I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer. For I tell you, I will not eat it again until it finds fulfillment in the kingdom of God.
But first, come Simon Peter, that I may wash your feet.


Peter, shocked:  Master, are you going to wash my feet?


Jesus:               You don’t understand now what I am doing Peter, but it will be clear enough to you later.


Peter, offended:
You are not going to wash my feet, ever!


Jesus:               If I don’t wash you, you can’t be a part of what I am doing.


Peter:               Master, then not only my feet. Wash my hands! Wash my head!


Jesus:               If you have had a bath in the morning, you only need your feet washed now and you are clean from head to toe. My concern, you understand, is holiness, not hygiene. So, now you are clean.
(looks at Judas who reacts by looking away)
But not every one of you.


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