‘Jesus Christ Superstar’ Creator Andrew Lloyd Webber Unmasks His Memoir (VIDEO)
Before there was Hamilton, Rent or even Les Miz, there were Andrew Lloyd Webber’s musical epics.
Largely sung-through and splashy as all get-out, the British composer is responsible for some of the biggest hits in the West End and on Broadway, including Cats, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Sunset Boulevard, Evita, and Phantom of the Opera. He’s done more with massive chandeliers, spiral staircases, and balconies than a million HGTV marathons.
One of his earliest works with longtime collaborator Tim Rice, the rock-opera Jesus Christ Superstar, is getting the live treatment this Easter weekend on NBC. Staged as a rock concert event—just as the piece was originally conceived back in 1970—Jesus Christ Superstar Live is set to feature John Legend as Jesus, Sara Bareilles as Mary Magdalene and Alice Cooper as King Herod.
The production comes at the perfect time for Lloyd Webber. In addition to the live special, NBC is also planning to air a tribute to his career and the icon has just released his first-ever memoir, Unmasked. The tome is packed with details about his theater before Phantom, which means, yes, we finally get some behind-the-curtain info on his roller-skate spectacle, Starlight Express (starring a pre-pre-pre-30 Rock Jane Krakowski), as well as a look at General Hospital‘s Finola Hughes as an original cast member of Cats.
We recently met with the man behind Unmasked for a segment on Celebrity Page to talk about his latest act, his new friendship with Lin-Manuel Miranda, and what he thinks of Broadway today. Because who better to ask “What’s the buzz, tell us what’s a happenin’?'” than the guy who’s been knighted by Queen Elizabeth II, has seven Tonys, three Grammys, and an Academy Award?
Jesus Christ Superstar Live, Sunday, April 1, 8/7c, NBC