Jesus popping in to say ‘hello’ at Opera House

Glenn Carter as Jesus in Jesus Christ Superstar''Pic by Pamela Raith''Pamela Raith
Glenn Carter as Jesus in Jesus Christ Superstar''Pic by Pamela Raith''Pamela Raith
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Glenn Carter’s got an appeal to the people of Blackpool and the Fylde… If you remember him as a local DJ from the early 1980s – pop by Blackpool Opera House next week when he’s there in Jesus Christ Superstar to say ‘hello’.

And the actor, who will play Jesus in the rock opera, is looking forward to revisiting the area during his stay.

Glenn lived in St Annes for three or four years from about 1980, working at venues including The Baron and Sands in Blackpool, Home in Poulton and Illawalla in Thornton and looks back fondly on those days.

“I went to all the pier shows when I lived there and got to know the late night bars,” he said. “I was very young.

“And I got to know a lot of the comedians, the Barron Knights, Russ Abbot, the Krankies.

“It was a great time. I actually joined Equity (the actors’ trade union) when I worked in Blackpool so it’s an amazing place in my life – although I doubt I’ll be doing the nights out on this visit.

“It’s a destination that’s so steeped in entertainment history and I’m looking forward to being there after so many years.”

Having grown up in Liverpool, Glenn very much sees the North West as his home and renewed friendships when he’s been back to the area for work.

“Last time I performed in Liverpool, people were coming to say hello, who I’d lost contact with when I went to train,” he explained.

“I’m hoping they’ll be in touch in Blackpool, too. I was friends with dancers and technicians.

“If people could come and say ‘hi’ that would be fabulous as some of the best people I’ve ever met are from those years.”

Revisiting characters from his past is something of a theme at the moment for Glenn, as he’s come back to Jesus Christ Superstar after a 10-year break. But he first played the role in 1996 in the West End, and he appeared in a 2000 remake of the show on film.

“I’m enjoying it,” he said. “It’s just one of those things, I sat around thinking after being offered it ‘When would I get the chance to do it again?’

“One of the best moments I’ve ever felt on stage is the scene of the Last Supper into the song Gethsemene, which is an amazing song. I’ll never get to do it in anger, as Jesus, again.”

At 50 years old, Glenn’s older than his on-stage 
persona, which he admits is ‘an odd one’ having originally tackled the role aged 33 – the ‘right’ age.

“I don’t feel any older or any different,” Glenn explained. “Some people say my voice is probably better, and I find it slightly harder work, but in some respects that’s good.

“If I had the experience I have now when I was 33, I would have done a better job.

“The character is a lot calmer than he was, which is something Bill Kenwright as director wanted too.”

Jesus Christ Superstar, Opera House, Blackpool, Tuesday to Saturday, March, 10 to 14. Call 0844 856 1111 or visit www.wintergardensblackpool.co.uk for tickets.

l See tomorrow’s Gazette for a preview of A Mad World My Masters, opening at the Grand Theatre on Thursday, and more from the cast of Jesus Christ Superstar in Wednesday’s paper, including former X Factor star Rhydian Roberts.