Martial arts style battles between angels and demons. Arial gymnasts engaging in acrobatic displays. Pyrotechnics. And a message that transcends time.
In a culture that embraces just about anything and everything anti-God, a live dramatization called The Thorn is sparking a revival of sorts. Unique in its offerings, The Thorn takes Christian outreach to a new level with creative performing arts. In its 19th year of production, what started as a play for the high school student ministry at New Life Church in Colorado Springs is now a nationally touring production. Created by John and Sarah Bolin, the Thorn currently boasts a cast and crew of over 700 for its Colorado Springs performances.
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Director Rob Stennett said, “The Thorn sets itself apart in bringing a cast and crew together that is not about any one actor, but about God’s love.”
The Thorn communicates a love story—between God and humankind. The ultimate love story where good triumphs over evil. However, the account of the Resurrection is not sugarcoated—and may be too intense for a younger audience. The Thorn box office recommends caution in bringing younger children.
The crucifixion scene shows a graphic representation of the lashing of Jesus and the nailing of his hands and wrists to the cross. As the audience listens to a song with lyrics of “Just to be with you I will give everything, I would give my life away,” centurions dressed in authentic Roman armor walk down the aisles calling out, “That should have been you up there! Why is that him up there and not you? Why weren’t you on that cross?” Meanwhile, pharisees yell, “You did this to him! This was your choice!”
With a riveting background musical track, the re-enactment of Biblical accounts of history cover the creation of the heavens and the earth to the spreading of the Gospel across the middle East and Asia. From the Old Testament pharaoh’s wife holding a limp child in her arms as she glides up the aisle sobbing, “Not my baby! Not my sweet boy!” to Jesus’ followers celebrating the empty grave of the New Testament, The Thorn is a gripping retelling of the passion of the Christ.
The Thorn lightens it up with a few one-liners from the narrator—depending on the year and location, that could be the apostle John or the apostle Thomas. In one of the 2014 performances, Thomas spoke about his displeasure of the nickname “Doubting Thomas,” telling himself that he needed to let it go. He followed up with a comment that “Let it Go,” sounded like it could be a catchy title to a song someday (alluding to the popular song from the Frozen soundtrack).
Locations for 2015 performances of The Thorn include Fort Worth, TX, Denver, CO, Colorado Springs, CO, Kansas City, KS, Sacramento, CA, and Nashville, TN—including the first ever all-Spanish performance at the Denver venue. Tickets can be ordered through their Web site at http://thethorn.net.