Directors’ notes for Jesus Conspiracy

“We came across Peter Burton’s play, originally called ‘The Pauline Conspiracy’, now re-titled as ‘The Jesus Conspiracy’, some years ago and have been wanting to put it on for some time now. It’s quite atypical for us as we’ve tended towards putting on our own work, which is often satirical in vein. This is a well-researched historical text, which as the writer says, aims to give a more plausible account of events surrounding Jesus’ life and death than the ‘fantasy of the gospels’.

It’s clearly a controversial take on things, but a serious one that we fully support. We decided to deal with the subject matter in the play head on rather than to shy away from some of its more provocative elements, such as showing Jesus as a husband with wife and child, so we’ve retained the sexual element in this version of the life of Jesus. Mary Magdalene is shown not as a harlot, or fallen woman but as an integral part of Jesus’s life and revolutionary mission – so the play deals with feminism and the sidelining of women whether in Christianity or more generally in all patriarchal societies.

That said we haven’t set out, nor is the aim to, shock anyone. This is a serious play from a serious playwright which is certainly thought-provoking but is worthy of serious consideration. We’ve got the writer coming down from his hometown of Glasgow for the last two nights so he’ll be leading a Q & A session after the play on issues within it and we’ve also got live musical accompaniment by ‘Greek-Blues’ guitarist Alex Solo a very talented Manchester-based musician. So all in all we hope it should be a great night of drama at The Casa and all for a fiver!”