Ted Neeley has played Jesus Christ in Jesus Christ Superstar for 35 years now. He shares his thoughts on what it’s like to be Jesus and the protests he had to get by in the beginning of the show’s run on Broadway.
The notion that part of Jesus’ life was made into a rock opera was considered blasphemous by some. It was a difficult time. “I remember going through those picket lines, fighting my way through to go in to work and I would ask the folks if they had seen the show,” he says.
“No one who was picketing had seen the show, so I would invite them in. Those who had the courage to come in would see the show — and love it.” So in the last few decades, the play has become a theatre standard and Neeley has played the role longer than Jesus was alive.