Friday, July 22, 2016

C.S. Lewis Onstage: The Most Reluctant Convert

Before I even knew I wanted to be a writer, I wanted to write like C.S. Lewis.  Through the Narnia Chronicles, he introduced me to fantastical imagination, to thrilling adventures, and, most of all, to Aslan.  Growing up, I developed a stronger appreciation for how his faith permeated his fiction and his nonfiction works.  His apologetics made me think more about my belief in God in a fresh and interesting way.  However, Lewis wasn't always a Christian.  That's the reality that Max McLean's one-man show, "C.S. Lewis Onstage: The Most Reluctant Convert," presents us with.


I knew that my favorite author used to be an atheist, but I enjoyed watching his transition to Christianity in a theatrical production.  The set looked exactly as I would picture Lewis' study - filled with books and completed with a comfy reading chair.  McLean essentially monologued for the whole 75 minutes, but I hardly noticed.  He displayed the character with the humor, intellectualism, and genuine reluctance that I could picture the real Lewis possessing.  I laughed out loud when he essentially called God a "nuisance."  I find his conversion so compelling because of how stubbornly he resisted God for years, despite the people and experiences He put on his path from atheism, to theism, to Christianity.  Eventually, even his books turned against him!  That was my favorite line.

I recognized various quotes that McLean pulled from books such as Mere Christianity, and I learned many aspects of the author's family, lifestyle, and personal journey that I hadn't known before.  Afterward, McLean came out for a brief Q&A, which he feared broke the magic.  It did, but it was worth hearing about his passion for the project and for portraying Christianity through theater at large.  McLean had a solid performance, and the background visuals were good.  However, if I wasn't already a fan of Lewis, I probably would not have enjoyed the production nearly as much.  For that reason I wouldn't recommend it to the general audience unless they are interested in learning more about Lewis' life.  If you are, this production would certainly satisfy you in an entertaining way!

1 comment:

  1. Looks awesome! Glad you're so passionate about him!