Have you ever heard of solo acting? Yes? No? Me neither.
On Wednesday, a man named Curt Cloninger, a solo thespian from Duluth, Georgia, came and delivered the message in chapel. But, he did something no other speaker had done before. He delivered his message through a skit called “Red Letter.” In this, he portrayed the role of Jesus, speaking to us as if we were His discipeles. He told familiar stories from the Bible from Jesus’s perspective, with his own little tid-bit that made the story seem more personal. He also put on a play Thursday night in the Powell Theatre entitled, “Lyceum.” Here, he portrayed the role of several people in the Bible who encountered Jesus on a personal level. He portrayed Peter as a redneck (go figure), Bartholemew as a guy from Brooklyn, Lazarus as an Italian baker, the demon-possessed man (spectacularly!), Thomas as a pessimist, and Barabbas as a black man from south Philly.
Of all his monologues, my favorite was Barabbas. What he did here was the most creative thing I’ve ever encountered about the Crucifixion. He told the story of the Crucifixion through the eyes of Barabbass! Have you ever thought about that? While he portrayed Barabbas, he told how he felt before Jesus was treated like he was and during and while he was on the cross. He started out acting like the Roman soldiers, then as a spectator, then he felt so much compassion for Jesus that he was wanting to be in his place! He acted out how the Romans were treating him, making it look like his was holding something (Jesus). I will never look at the Crucifixion the same way again. It was really life-changing.