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Senior Lyle Manion as Jesus on the cross.

Senior Lyle Manion as Jesus on the cross.

The Marian Players presented the annual Passion Play on March 26 and 27. The play, put on by the Theater III class, is performed annually the week before the Easter holidays to get the student body in the Lenten Spirit. The 45-minute performance portrays Jesus’ death and the events leading up to it.

This year’s production included an evening performance on Tuesday, March 26, for the general public and two school-day performance on Wednesday, March 27, for the student body. Jesus was portrayed by Senior Lyle Manion.

“It was a tough role to play at first, but the grim nature of the play and the gravity of the whole thing made it easier to get into,” said Manion.

More goes into this play than meets the eye. The play always proves to be a challenging feat, with only about 2 weeks of rehearsal and the show’s first performance just two days after the closing performance of the Marian Player’s spring musical. When asked if it was hard transition between his roles as Piragua Guy in “In the Heights” and Jesus in the Passion, Manion said, “It wasn’t too hard, but it goes without saying that a shaved ice vender and the savior of mankind are very different roles.”

In order to set the stage, the Briggs Assembly Center must be transformed into a performance space suitable for the event. Using lattice covered with black fabric, a backstage is created for the musicians and actors. Two spotlights have to be brought in from the theater and elevated near the back of the assembly center for use in the show. The  Passion Play is  a more engaging way to spread the Good News during the Lenten season, and it does a good job of getting the message across.

“I always look forward to the Passion Play before Easter. It is awesome to see your friends transform into these very challenging roles,” said sophomore Josh Nunez.

The cast and crew of the show are completely made up of students from the Theater III class and girls from the spring musical.

A crucified Jesus lays in Mary's arms.

The crucified Jesus lays in Mary’s arms.

Other characters in the play included Thomas Duet as Peter, Alexander Stallard as John, Christian Voelkel as Malchus, Collin D’angelo as Longinus, Patrick Logarbo as Judas, Jimmy Montour as Man 1, Kannon Otillio as Man 2, Jordan Alex Smith as Man 3, Trey Leblanc as Caiaphas, Evan McGraw as Pharisee 1, Jonathan Damare as Pharisee 2, and Marshall Vairan as Pharisee 3. The role of Simon of Cyrene was portrayed at the various performances by Jay Washington, Joel Spansel, and Christian Commander.

Other roles include Clare Seghers as Mary, Caroline Marcello as Girl, Katherine Carey as Mary Magdalene, Elise Frost as Mary, Wife of Clopus, and Molly MacKenzie as Veronica. The Weeping Woman were portrayed by Sarah Seghers, Maggie Marcello, and Rebecca Richard. The play was narrated by Gerard Gianoli.

Music was provided by Christi Simoneaux, Connor Mahony, Ryan Enk, Pierre Simoneaux, Gene Lipps, Robert Simpson, Charlie Legendre, and Clare Seghers. The lighting crew consisted of Cody Despointes, Parker Warden, and Tyler Walther.

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