The much-publicised new North American touring production of Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Jesus Christ Superstar has suddenly been cancelled, just over a week before its first performance in New Orleans on 9 June.
Options Clause Entertainment LLC, an affiliate of the production company S2BN Entertainment, announced that the Jesus Christ Superstar Arena Spectacular Tour had been cancelled and that all purchased tickets would be refunded. The 50-plus city tour was due to stop in Toronto, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York City and more, before culminating in Philadelphia at the Wells Fargo Arena on 17 August.
The high-profile cast included Brandon Boyd, lead vocalist of rock band Incubus, in the role of Judas Iscariot; *N Sync singer JC Chasez as Pontius Pilate; member of Destiny’s Child Michelle Williams in the female lead as Mary Magdalene; John Lydon, frontman of Public Image Ltd and Sex Pistols, as King Herod; and British actor/singer Ben Forster, who played the lead role in the UK and Australian arena tours of Jesus Christ Superstar, once again as Jesus.
Only yesterday, cast members had been working with director Laurence Connor (who has staged the current Broadway revival of Les Misérables) at a rehearsal space in New Orleans.
Forster wrote on Twitter: “My heart is broken. My beautiful talented cast and company I adore. This wonderful show and opportunity is over. I’m so sorry, I am devastated.”
The North American leg came on the heels of the successful UK and Australian arena tours, which began in the UK in September 2012 and commenced in Australia in May 2013.