“Jesus Christ Superstar” Rocks the Santa Barbara Stage

Founded in 2009, Out of the Box Theatre Company is a nonprofit theatre company dedicated to bringing contemporary musicals to the Santa Barbara stage.

As a vibrant part of the local arts community, they have spent the last fifteen years highlighting local talent, bringing together some of the top performers, musicians, and designers in Santa Barbara in order to present entertaining, edgy, and socially relevant shows that fall outside of the common expectations of musical theatre.

Led by Artistic Director Samantha Eve, Out of the Box Theatre Company presented its first show, Reefer Madness, in April 2010. Since then, they have produced shows such as Assassins, Spring Awakening, Carrie the Musical, Bonnie & Clyde, Evil Dead the Musical, The Rocky Horror Show, Next to Normal, Heathers, Fun Home, American Psycho, Miss You Like Hell, Once, and Alice by Heart.

This April, Out of the Box will bring its 25th production to Center Stage Theater—Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Jesus Christ Superstar. The first musical by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice to be produced for the professional stage, Jesus Christ Superstar has wowed audiences for over 50 years.

A timeless work, the rock opera is set against the backdrop of an extraordinary and universally known series of events but seen, unusually, through the eyes of Judas Iscariot. Loosely based on the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, Superstar follows the last week of Jesus Christ’s life. The story, told entirely through song, explores the personal relationships and struggles between Jesus, Judas, Mary Magdalene, his followers, and the Roman Empire.

With the mission to bring “the best musical theatre you’ve never seen” to the Santa Barbara community, Out of the Box aims to bring awareness of lesser-known contemporary musicals to local audiences. With a live rock band and an all-female and nonbinary cast of 18 all-star performers including Miriam Dance as Jesus, Lois Mahalia as Pontius Pilate, Renee Cohen as Judas, and local drag artist Vivian Storm as King Herod, this is a new take on one of the oldest stories ever told. This iconic 1970s rock score contains such well-known numbers as “Superstar,” “I Don’t Know How to Love Him,” and “Gethsemane”—in Out of the Box’s inventive reimagining, hear these songs as you’ve never heard them before!

Jesus Christ Superstar runs April 5-14, 2024 at Center Stage Theater. Tickets are available through the Center Stage Theater website or by calling the box office at 805-964-0408. For more information on Out of the Box Theatre Company, learn more about past shows and upcoming events at www.outoftheboxtheatre.org.


Sponsored by Out of the Box Theatre Company.