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The Essence of His Death: The Musical

Important Note: When our musical scripts were first written, the choral and accompaniment music for which they were written were current and available. But Christian music literature has a brief shelf life; it goes out of print quickly. (We do not compose music, but write dramatic scripts that work with existing published music literature.)
Rather than remove our scripts because the associated music literature may no longer be available, we have opted to give our users the opportunity to either locate the original music on their own, or substitute music of their own choosing.
Do not plan on using one of our musical scripts until you have made this decision.

The information below includes everything we know about the music literature originally used for this musical. Nothing is gained by writing us for more.

90 minutes / 18 characters

Description
This third and latest version the The Essence of His Death story line is a full combination of both His Company scripts: The Essence of His Death, and The Choice. It begins with The Choice (and uses the same music), but then adds back in all the scenes and characters removed from Essence for the original The Choice.

Confused?

This is a two-act production, running between 90 and 105 minutes in length, with a very large cast.

Hordedef and Sekhti, Egyptian purveyors of rare essence (used in the manufacture of perfume), have come up into Judea for the Passover. Familiar with the Hebrew holiday, they will be actively trying to separate the residents of Jerusalem from some of their hard-earned money. In the city, they are caught up in the political intrigue surrounding the trial and subsequent execution of a "prophet" from Nazareth. In the midst of it all, Sekhti falls in love with a young believer named Dinah.

Meanwhile, Nicodemus, a prominent member of the Sanhedrin finds the courage to renounce his standing in the Council and publicly claim this crucified one as his Master.

Men and women, young and old, Hebrew and Egyptian—all are somehow changed by this one called Jesus Christ. Some will hear His words but reject them as blasphemy; others will hear his words as wisdom, but never yield their lives; but some will believe and open their hearts, taking Jesus at his word and finally knowing the true Essence of His Death.

Theme
Why Jesus died for us; Human traditions vs God's word

Production Notes
Essence requires a standard stage-lighting setup and/or a curtain. Because His Company typically performs in church sanctuaries, we rarely use a curtain for scene changes, depending more on black-outs.

Characters
Sekhti: purveyor of rare Egyptian essence
Hotep: Sekhti's partner, a bit of a buffoon
Theodosious: greasy Roman merchant
Dinah: our heroine a pretty young woman
Abigail: outspoken, obnoxious friend of Dinah
Fruit Seller
Jesus
Malchiah: colleague of Nicodemus in the Sanhedrin
Nicodemus: member of the Sanhedrin
Jerusha: servant girl
Crassius: a Roman soldier
Lucius: a Roman soldier
Peter: the apostle
Caiaphas: the Chief Priest
Mary: the mother of Jesus
Artemus: servant of Nicodemus
Miriam: Dinah's mother
Angel: non-speaking, but sings solo
The Chorus

Set
In keeping with His Company philosophy, the set for Essence is nominal, allowing the audience to focus on the characters and action. However, this play would also work well with a more traditional background and set. If your facilities and budget will allow, you could use painted backdrops, scrims, set pieces, etc. In our production (staged in a typical, carpeted sanctuary) we "suggested" elements that could have been actual set pieces in another production. For example, for the well or spring in Act 1/Scene 4, we simply had the women dip their pitchers over the side of a wooden banister.
The following set pieces are required:

  • "Rocks" or something for merchants to sit on
  • Benches for sitting
  • Fire ring (instructions for construction included with script)
  • Spring or well (or area of stage to suggest same)
  • Rough wooden table

Props
5 large shoulder bags for merchants
Collection of glass and stone jars with stoppers
3 leather pouches for coins
Coins
Large handful of gaudy, costume jewelry (Theodosius)
Water pouch
Large broken crusts of bread
1 medium size fish (e.g., trout)
Collection of sticks for fire
Swords for soldiers
Collection of pottery waterjugs and baskets for women
Water
Collection of jugs, baskets, sticks, etc. for extras
Large impressive chair for Caiaphas (optional;depends on blocking)
25 lb. bag of kitty litter (painted; for spices in Act 3/Scene 1)
Collection of blankets

Music Information
The music used is from the choral musical, The Choice, by Robert Sterling (WORD/Thomas Nelson, 1993). Call 1-800-251-4000; item numbers are
Choral Book: ISDN #3010255012
Cassette Trax: ISDN #3014233608X
CD Trax: ISDN #3019351588

Topics
The Essence of His Death The Choice Jesus Crucifixion Sacrifice Egypt Sekhti Hordedef Dinah Peter Denial Caiaphas Nicodemus Perfume Spice Easter

Downloads
Dave
PDF for Production (2409)
Plain Text for Review (1603)

(Download: right-click / View: left-click)


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by Dr. Radut.