Drama Kirk's Passion Play returns with a special performance this Easter

Drama Kirk might not be taking to the streets of Hamilton and East Kilbride as planned this year to share ‘The Passion of Jesus’ with their local communities, but they have been working hard behind the scenes to ensure they can still bring The Passion to Lanarkshire – and beyond.

An image from last year's Passion Play
'The Passion of Jesus' will be broadcast on Good Friday (10 April) and Easter Saturday (11 April) on Hamilton Old Parish Church's YouTube channel.

A smaller-scale version of the play has been recorded and will be broadcast on YouTube for everyone to watch for free on Good Friday and Easter Saturday.

Liz Blackman, who produces the Hamilton Passion Play, said:

“With the option of bringing a live performance to Hamilton not possible this year, we began to think about how we might ensure a community celebration of Easter.

“So, we decided to put together a scaled-down version of the play for broadcast on YouTube.

“We faced some challenging choices as the COVID-19 pandemic gathered pace.

“Our rehearsals were still progressing, but we were conscious that, at any point, we may have to cancel the performances.

“We took the difficult decision to change our plans and focus our efforts on filming what we could of the production, to ensure we still had something worthwhile to share.

“Those who join us will see a depiction of the final week of Jesus’ earthly life, from Bethany to the Resurrection.

“We had to make some cuts along the way as our large cast reduced in size but – thankfully – we are still able to share this important story.”

‘Experience the gospel story afresh’

An image from last year's Passion Play
“Those who join us will see a depiction of the final week of Jesus’ earthly life, from Bethany to the resurrection."

The planned performances were part of a UK-wide project to perform the same play at the same time in multiple towns and cities, led by the team behind the famous Trafalgar Square Passion Play.

They have put together a documentary about the project, with footage of the different locations involved, including Hamilton. This will be broadcast by Wintershall on Good Friday.

It is hoped this project will be repeated in 2021 and Drama Kirk, who were producing the only Scottish performances for Wintershall, plan to be part of this, too.

The Drama Kirk team hope that many will join them for the broadcast.

“This story, familiar to Christians and others the world over, has new resonance in this, an Easter like no other,” said Liz.

“In the aftermath of the crucifixion, the Bible tells us that the disciples scattered. Like many of us, they were alone and frightened.

“Through the resurrection, they had new hope.

“Our wish is that our performance would bring light and hope to many.

“We may be in our homes; but it is still Easter and we can still come together as a community and experience the gospel story afresh.”

Watch the Passion Play

An image from last year's Passion Play
A smaller-scale version of the play has been recorded and will be broadcast on YouTube for everyone to watch for free on Good Friday and Easter Saturday.

'The Passion of Jesus' will be broadcast on Hamilton Old Parish Church's YouTube channel on:

  • Good Friday (Friday 10 April) from 3:15pm until 4:15pm
  • Easter Saturday (Saturday 11 April) from 2:30pm-3:30pm

Drama Kirk hopes to have British Sign Language interpretation during the Easter Saturday performance.

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