CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Sunday morning, the Sunrise Easter Passion play was once again held at Cole Park Amphitheater, after it was cancelled in 2020 due to the pandemic.
“My mom and I have been coming to this show for the last four or five years,” said Marcus Sarante. “[We were] definitely looking forward to it more since it was cancelled last year.”
But it wasn’t just people in the audience who were glad to have the show back. The performers were also grateful to be back out on the hill doing the production.
“I think it means a lot to everybody. We didn’t really know what to do when it got cancelled, it was the first time that that had happened, except for some years ago. But, it was throwing us off a bit, and it was nice for us to come together and be able to do it. I feel like the community needed it, as did the rest of the cast and crew,” said Rich Lockhart, who portrayed Jesus Christ in the show for the second year.
A few hundred people dotted the lawn at Cole Park, socially distancing on chairs, on blankets, or just standing. Lockhart said the turnout was similar to what they have seen in previous years.
“I was happy, you never know how things are going to go whenever they’re cancelled the prior year. But, it was all the way it was supposed to be,” he said.
Two people in that crowd were Roy and Cindy Calloway, who were attending the play for the first time. After the last year, with so many events cancelled, they were grateful they could attend an event on Easter Sunday.
“I think it’s wonderful, I think it’s a true blessing,” said Ray. “Yes, praise God,” Cindy added.
Lockhart said it’s a positive experience getting to portray Jesus in the show.
“For me, it’s very humbling, it’s gratifying, and it feels good to try to walk in the steps of the higher power. It’s just enlightening,” he said.
He also encouraged anyone who missed the show Sunday to come see it next Easter Sunday, as they will continue the tradition at Cole Park.