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Last Updated: Tuesday, 22 March, 2005, 18:48 GMT
Springer opera stage bid slammed
David Soul as Jerry Springer
David Soul plays talk show host Jerry Springer
The possible staging of a controversial musical in Bradford has been described as "degrading" and "insulting" by a city reverend.

Negotiations are taking place between managers of Jerry Springer the Opera and bosses at the Alhambra theatre.

Rev Douglas Legge, from Thorpe Edge Evangelical Church, claims the show "sets out to mock Christianity".

Theatre manager Adam Renton said he hopes people will be able to make up their own minds about the show.

The show sparked outrage among Christian groups when it was aired on BBC Two in January and now the production could be coming to West Yorkshire in May next year as part of a regional tour.

I don't see my role, or the council's role, as one of censorship
Theatre manager Adam Renton

Mr Renton said the move should be seen as a coup for the city rather than something negative.

"I don't see my role, or the council's role, as one of censorship," he added.

"I would hope the audience use their own personal preferences and make up their own minds about whether to see the show.

"If you take Jerry Springer in the context of a 12 month programme of productions then you can see that there are shows that may be of offence to some small groups."

'Mentally rejected'

In the performance Jesus Christ is seen wearing a nappy and God is portrayed as being ineffectual, which Rev. Legge said he finds annoying.

He said: "I've never seen it and I don't think it is necessary to see it as I've read sufficient information about it to see what kind of production it is.

"Any contact with this is degrading to even someone who mentally rejects it. It is blasphemous and sets out to insult Jesus Christ who came into the world and gave his life for us.

"It offends those who believe in and love Jesus. It basically intends to mock religion."

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14 Mar 05 |  TV and Radio
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10 Jan 05 |  TV and Radio
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09 Jan 05 |  West Midlands
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23 Feb 05 |  TV and Radio
Springer musical to go on UK tour
13 Jan 05 |  TV and Radio

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