2008-02-28 / News

Dedicated actors perform in traveling Passion Play

Rosemary Arnholt rarnholt@laview.net

The Davison Passion Players perform a play on the crucifixion of Christ throughout the county this month.The Davison Passion Players perform a play on the crucifixion of Christ throughout the county this month.By Rosemary Arnholt
VIEW News Editor

GENESEE COUNTY — Andrew Pastue’s long dedication to the annual Passion Play and the members of the Davison Passion Players who perform it has rubbed off on a swarm of his relatives.

This year, the retiree’s daughter, brother-in-law, four grandchildren, several nieces and more will join him in performances.

There is no admission fee, but donations are welcome. After the opening weekend, the play moves on to locations in Flint, Davison and Burton before returning to Davison High School for the traditional last performance on Good Friday. This year that date is March 21.

Pastue joined the players when some members of a Catholic Church in Davison met in the early 1970s to put on a Passion Play as an ecumenical group. He later moved, was placed on second shift and had to leave the players, but about seven or eight years ago heard word of a Passion Play from a cast member who was recruiting.

“It sounded like the same group,” said Pastue, who rejoined.

The play changes somewhat from year to year, such as adding characters to try to accommodate everyone who wants a part, but the basis of the play is taken from the word of St. John: “What Jesus says is taken right out of the Bible,” he says.

It also changes venue. With the exception of Davison High School, the play moves to other locations about every three years, just about the time the crowd dwindles a little, Pastue says.

He plays the role of a bad priest this year, but was quick to note that he’s played Peter in a former performance. Playing the part of a “heavy” makes him fodder for a few jokes around the family, however all of the players, no matter what age, take their role in the play seriously and in fact, consider it a ministry.

“We always like to say, it’s the greatest story ever told,” said Pastue.

The ministry also needs people who work on “The Greatest Story” behind the scenes. People volunteer to work on the lights, sound, website, publicity, costumes, make-up, poster and flyer placement and more.

“There are about 40 people on stage for a performance and maybe 50 total, with those behind the scenes,” he said.

Players are drawn mainly from Genesee and Lapeer County. Aside from their commitment to act out the message of Christianity, they are dedicated. Rehearsals begin months ahead of the performances and players arrive at their appointed venue two hours ahead of curtain time for make-up and costuming.

The Davison Passion Players hear from many churches or groups interested in having the play performed at a favored location. Among the requirements is sufficient room for the players and audience and 20 amp circuits for the lights and sound, he says.

To learn more and see a video of the play, visit www.davisonpassionsplayers.com.

Return to top

Copyright © 2009-2018 Grand Blanc View, All Rights Reserved