• Cast Number: 17
  • Run-time: 90 minutes
  • Bible Reference: Matthew
a musical, (using common music which is not included), contemporary look at history and the ministry of Jesus. Written by Jane Williams

NOTE RE MUSIC: See addendum at end of script for more information

Set:simple except for the Last Supper scene and crucifixion scene. Both of these scenes were behind scrim. We built the crucifixion scene on scaffold above and behind the Last Supper scene. There was a raised stage area off stage to the right that was Jays home base. The other scenes were scattered across the stage, some areas being used twice. We made use of the entire auditorium to make the audience feel connected, as Jay (aka Jesus) walked around and talked with the people. The vocalists were off the main stage on a stage to the left similar to Jays on the right.

Costumes: The costuming for most of the scenes is black pants and black turtle neck with a simple vest. This generic look helps with the question of time period. The Palm Sunday scene is in stark contrast to this simplicity. We used Biblical costumes for this scene. The costumes in the Upper Room scene were as close to the original painting as possible.

The cast can be as large as you need or as small as 17. The narrator must be a strong character. By the end of the play most people have realized that it is Jesus telling His own story. We kept this very secret before the production. You want the audience to catch this fact as the story progresses. By the end of the production you want the audience to have seen that God, in the form of Jesus, loves us enough to step down to earth and walk among us, to die for us, to rise again and to come back and leave us His words and promises. Jay needs to display this amazing love throughout.

In scene 2, it is not obvious who the disciples are to the audience. This tension of not knowing if many of the scenes are Biblical or contemporary is intentional. The same actors in Scene 2 are the disciples in Scene 6

Sample of script:

Prelude as people enter: “Jesus, Lover of My Soul”

Lights to black

Scene 1

SPOT on Jay on platform S.R.
(Jay is wearing tweed pants, black turtleneck and a hip length vest; sitting casually on a stool )
Jay: Hi there! (standing) Thanks for coming. Glad you could drop in. Welcome to our place here. (sweeping arms around) Man, the light’s bright up here. (shading eyes) That’s better. Wow, there’s a lot of you. (letting hand drop, then grimacing) Maybe if I come down there…
(jumping off stage and down into audience; HOUSE LIGHTS up 50%)
Ah, that’s better. I want to get to know you (chuckle)…it’s easier if I can actually see you. (to man in audience) Hi, you can call me Jay. What’s your name? (repeats man’s name) Is this your family? (greet several people) Since we’re going to spend some time together tonight let’s get to know one another a little. (following over a 1-2 minute period) Turn to someone near you and tell them one thing they probably don’t know about you. That’s right. Take your time. (moving to midway platform) I know it’s not easy…being a little vulnerable…but thanks. Now we’re one big happy family. Right?! (chuckles) OK, maybe not. But thanks for sharing.
House LIGHTS to zero %
Actually, that’s what tonight’s about. I’m going to be sharing some stories with you…things that have happened to some people I know. Like my friend Stan here…
(looks at stage; sits on stool)
(Stan is standing CR, holding mug; Greg is standing C behind small table, stirring coffee; Tom enters and pours his cup)
Greg: Surely you don’t believe such nonsense. God, maybe. But the Son of God? You claim to know the Son of God. Come on, Stan.
Tom: Don’t let the boss hear you talking like that. You might not have a job for long.
Stan: Who knows…I may not have my job for long anyway. But I want people to know Him like I do.
Greg: (to Tom) Stan here claims to know God. Next he’ll be claiming to be God. (Stan tries to stop him) Mr. Goody-two-shoes. Never seen him drunk at office parties, never heard him swear…
Stan: You’ve got it all wrong, Greg. You’re looking at me. I’m trying to point you to Him.
Greg: Him who?
Tom: Come on, Greg. You know who he’s talking about. You got a hangover this morning or something?
(All freeze)
Lights dim on stage; up on Jay
Jay: There was a man who lived about 2000 years ago who sounded a little like Stan here. His name was John. Some people called him John the Baptist since he spent much of his time baptizing people cause they wanted to turn their lives around. You ask…what could he have had in common with my friend Stan? Well, John the Baptist pointed people to Jesus, not to himself. That was his job. And that’s what Stan’s trying to do. Ok, let’s see where he’s going with this.
Lights on stage; off Jay
(all unfreeze)
Stan: What do we sell in this place, Greg? (sweeping arms around)
Greg: (duh) Life Insurance.
Stan: Why? Besides to make a living.
Greg: Because my wife wants more than just a “living”?
Tom: I think I know where he’s going, Greg.
Greg: Then you answer him. Be my guest.
Tom: To provide for the ones we leave behind. Giving financial freedom.
Greg: True. Now, what does that have to do with God?
Tom: Stan here wants to leave something behind for us. His values, what he believes.
Stan: Sorry, Tom. Close. And I guess that’s part of it. But I’m talking about God here, not me. He wants to give you freedom too…but not financial freedom. Freedom from fear, worry, futility…
Tom: Whoa, now, you’ve lost me too.
Stan: It takes a different perspective to see spiritual things.
Greg: So you think you’re better than we are. You have “spiritual eyes.”
Stan: Again, Greg, it’s not about me.
Greg: You said you have a spiritual perspective.
Stan: But that’s not what’s important. The bottom line here is Jesus. If He was standing here right now, I wouldn’t be fit to shine His shoes. He’s the One who can change your life.
Greg: Maybe I don’t want my life changed.
Tom: (ignoring Greg) Get back to the life insurance. Where does that come in?
Stan: Those who take out the policy can be assured of life, even after death.
Tom: Who sells this policy?
Stan: I can point you in the right direction, God does the rest.
Tom: (looking at watch) Gotta get back to the grind, but how about lunch? I’d like to hear more.
Stan: Lunch is cool. I’ll come by your office. What time?
(Greg shakes his head and walks off)
Tom: I have a conference call at eleven. How about noon?
Stan: Noon it is. See you then.
Tom: Looking forward to it.
LIGHTS down as both exit; LIGHTS on Jay

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