Alice Cooper Takes on Maniacal King Herod in 'Jesus Christ Superstar Live'

Alice Cooper
Alice Cooper (REUTERS/Pilar Olivares)

Renowned rocker Alice Cooper will take the stage again, this time as King Herod in Jesus Christ Superstar Live!

"Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice wrote a showstopping musical number for Herod and we all look forward to the 'King of Shock Rock' taking on the King of Judea. As the casting for 'Superstar' ramps up, we can feel the excitement building for this brand-new concert experience of what has long been considered the original rock musical," says Robert Greenblatt, Chairman, NBC Entertainment.

Cooper has been a Christian for more than 30 years.

As Charisma previously reported:

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Away from the stage or studio Cooper is a devoted family man, devout churchgoer, astute businessman and restaurateur, enthusiastic golfer and dedicated parent who with his wife annually helps local schoolchildren put on a big stage-production.

Although he became a Christian in the 1980s, the 54-year-old singer has always been guarded about his faith except for brief comments in some interviews—such as when he told Britain's Sunday Times Magazine last year: "Drinking beer is easy. Trashing your hotel room is easy. But being a Christian, that's a tough call. That's real rebellion."

Coope—who changed his name legally from Vince Furnier—went into detail for the first time earlier this year in a frank interview with a Christian music magazine, speaking at length about his love for God and reluctance to become a "Christian celebrity."

Seen as having paved the way for the likes of today's outrageous performers such as Marilyn Manson, Cooper maintains that his act was never political or religious and always had "a sense of humor." He told HM: The Hard Music Magazine that he was always insulted whenever he was accused of being satanic. Raised in a Christian home, he still believed in God, although he was not personally committed.

That changed when alcoholism threatened his marriage. He and his wife, Sheryl, attended a church with a "hellfire pastor." Cooper said he became a Christian "initially more out of the fear of God, rather than the love of God. I did not want to go to hell." Now he views his faith as "an ongoing thing," he said. "Being a Christian is something you just progress in. You learn. You go to your Bible studies. You pray."

Cooper has avoided what he calls "celebrity Christianity" because not doing so would make it "really easy to focus on Alice Cooper and not on Christ. I'm a rock singer. I'm nothing more than that. I'm not a philosopher. I consider myself low on the totem pole of knowledgeable Christians. So, don't look for answers from me."

Herod Antipas wanted Jesus to perform miracles and beheaded John the Baptist.

In the musical, King Herod is known for his self-titled song, "Herod's Song":

Jesus, I am overjoyed to meet you face to face./ You've been getting quite a name all around the place.
Healing cripples, raising from the dead./And now I understand you're God,
At least, that's what you've said./ So, you are the Christ, you're the great Jesus Christ.
Prove to me that you're divine; change my water into wine./That's all you need do, then I'll know it's all true./ Come on, King of the Jews.
Jesus, you just won't believe the hit you've made around here./ You are all we talk about, the wonder of the year.
Oh what a pity if it's all a lie./Still, I'm sure that you can rock the cynics if you tried.
So, you are the Christ, you're the great Jesus Christ./ Prove to me that you're no fool; walk across my swimming pool.
If you do that for me, then I'll let you go free./Come on, King of the Jews.
I only ask what I'd ask any superstar./ What is it that you have got that puts you where you are.
I am waiting, yes I'm a captive fan./ I'm dying to be shown that you are not just any man.
So, if you are the Christ, yes the great Jesus Christ/ Feed my household with this bread./You can do it on your head.
Or has something gone wrong./ Jesus, why do you take so long?/ Oh come on, King of the Jews.
Hey! Aren't you scared of me, Christ?/ Mr. Wonderful Christ?
You're a joke. You're not the Lord./ You are nothing but a fraud.
Take him away./He's got nothing to say!
Get out you King of the, /Get out King of the,/ Oh get out you King of the Jews!
Get out of here!/ Get out of here you,/ Get out of my life.

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