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Passion play

From Academic Kids

A Passion play is a dramatic presentation depicting the suffering and death of Jesus. It is a traditional part of Lent in several Christian denominations, particularly in Roman Catholic tradition.

Many different retellings of this story have been produced over the centuries. The most famous is that first performed in 1634 and now performed every ten years at Oberammergau in Germany. The villagers vowed that if God spared them from the effects of the bubonic plague then ravaging the region they would perform the story of Christ's Passion every ten years. The play is performed at the start of each decade, i.e. in years ending with a zero (see Oberammergau Passion Play). More than 2000 performers take part, and all are residents of the village.

In Catalonia, Spain, it is common for villages to present different passion plays every Easter, like the one in Olesa de Montserrat, which was first documented in 1538. The 1996 production surpassed the world record for the most people acting onstage at the same time, with 726 persons.

In Eureka Springs, Arkansas, the Great Passion Play is regularly performed and very popular.

The 2004 film The Passion of the Christ was a film adaptation of the Passion play. The 1989 film Jésus de Montréal presents the staging of a very unorthodox version while the players' lives themselves mirror the Passion.


Passion Play is also the title of a stage play by Peter Nichols, which explores themes of desire and adultery.


A Passion Play is also the title of an album by Jethro Tull, about the journey of a recently deceased man through the after-life.

See also

Template:Christianity-stubde:Passionsspiel ca:La Passió

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