Easter Passion Play

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Glenbervie Primary head teacher Iain Bell will play Peter in a Passion Play for Easter being staged in Aberdeen.

Iain (38), has been head teacher at Glenbervie for 10 years and this is the first time that he has been involved in a production of this scale.

Iain says: “It is exciting to be involved in Aberdeen’s first Passion Play in recent times.

“Developing the character of Peter has been an enjoyable challenge. I have also thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to work alongside other amateur actors, singers and musicians.

“The script is an accurate retelling of Luke’s Gospel with a live band and large choir singing altered versions of well known rock and pop songs.

“I am certain that ‘Aberdeen Passion: One Life Given’ will give the audience an interesting and emotional insight into this well known story.”

The Passion Play takes place On Friday and Saturday April 6 and 7.

Passion Plays are traditional dramatisations depicting the Passion of Jesus’ life and follow his trial, suffering and death on a cross. They date back to medieval times and have been a feature throughout the world ever since, sparking keen public interest specifically in the 19th century. In 2003, the BBC broadcasted a musical version, and in 2011, Glasgow held its own Passion play.

The Aberdeen Passion is a huge undertaking involving a cast of 100. For writer and director Andrew Sykes, an Aberdonian, it’s been a long process. “Twelve years ago, I directed a Christmas play at the Bridge of Don Baptist Church called ‘Angus and the Angel’. Ever since then, I’ve been itching to write an Easter play. It took several attempts before the final play was written. It’s suddenly come together and has grown quickly – both in meaning and in the practicalities of it.”

Moira Allen, who plays Mary, commented on the scale of the production, “it’s huge, and includes the walls of Jerusalem, Herod’s Palace, the crucifixion setting and the tomb. The set and props are designed to look authentic; even the cups at the Last Supper look like the real thing.”

Although keeping with tradition, there are modern twists throughout the play. “We’ve taken songs by Snow Patrol, Elbow, Take That and Katherine Jenkins and rewritten the words to fit with the story. The play isn’t a musical but the songs help with the emotions running through the play,” says Andrew.