Saturday 21 October 2017

Papa Mia? John Paul II, the musical

Pope John Paul II
Pope John Paul II

Nick Squires in Rome

It may lack the glitz of 'Chicago' and the spectacle of 'The Lion King', but a musical has been written based on the life of Pope John Paul II (right).

Theatre-goers hoping for the light touch of shows such as 'Mamma Mia!' will be disappointed – the musical will depict the assassination attempt on John Paul II, when he was shot by a Turkish gunman in the middle of St Peter's Square in 1981.

The unusual musical will have its debut in Italy in January, with the producers hoping to move the show to Rome to coincide with the canonisation of the late Polish Pope.

The musical, 'Karol Wojtyla: The True Story', will depict his life from Nazi-occupied Poland to the priesthood, his role in bringing down Communism and his election as pontiff in 1978. The show will start with the assassination attemptby Mehmet Ali Agca, who shot the pontiff in the stomach, hand and arm as he rode in his open-topped "popemobile" through St Peter's Square. The Pope will be played by three actors, representing stages of his life from nine-year-old boy to middle-aged man. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

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