MORE THAN JUST A MAN

Church members to perform annual Easter musical on Sunday
By LYNETTE SOWELL
 
The dramatic Easter musical “More than Just a Man” is a longstanding Easter weekend tradition for the members of Cove Church of the Nazarene.
 
On Wednesday evening, the cast and crew of approximately 50 along with a supporting cast of chickens, ran through their dress rehearsal with as much fervor as if they acted and sang for a packed house.
 
Although the musical is a familiar one to the majority of the cast, made up of church members, this year a new dramatic director helped come alongside the music director.
 
Sara Blair coached the cast members through their parts, even the ones without direct lines.
 
“I wanted them to think about what it would be like for someone in first-century Israel,” Blair said, adding that they began rehearsals in February.
 
Church members have played the parts in the musical over the years, with some of them taking on different roles as they grew. For example, Blair said one of the Roman guards first acted in the play when he was four years old.
 
“They joke sometimes about the younger ones being ‘guards-in-training,’” Blair said.
 
The musical’s opening scene with the song “A Call To Worship” includes a solo by young Stephen Clark and is from the viewpoint of Mary searching for the 12-year-old Jesus, accidentally left behind in Jerusalem. The remainder of the musical focuses on the ministry, life, death and resurrection of Jesus, as seen through the eyes of Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathea, set against the backdrop of Roman occupation.
 
A combination of scheming Jewish religious leaders along with political intrigue, the musical also highlights the miracles and words of Christ, followed by His triumphant entry, crucifixion, death and resurrection.
 
Ann Hohner reprises her role as the musical director, and also plays the role of Mary Magdalene in the duet “I’ve Just Seen Jesus”, sung with Brian Parker.
 
This year, the part of Jesus is played by Caleb Fraer, an Army chaplain who portrays the Messiah with quiet strength. Nicodemus is played by Brian Parker, and the role of Joseph of Arimathea is played by Pastor Gary Hocker, both recurring roles for the two.
 
The church had its first performance last evening and has performances scheduled for tonight and tomorrow at 7 p.m. Admission is free.
 
Cove Church of the Nazarene is located at, 964 W. Business Highway 190. For more information: www.covenazarene.org.

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