Gethsemane

15 tracks available on Spotify

15 tracks available on Spotify

Gethsemane – Lyrics and Music by John McDermott

Logline

 

Nadi prays for the coming of the warrior Messiah who will wipe out the Romans. But he has a choice to make, fighting the Romans or being with the love of his life Chloe, who is Jesus’s closest disciple.  

 

Nadi and Chloe fell in love in Nazareth 2,000 years ago despite Nadi being wanted by the Romans. They also witnessed their friend being crucified by the Romans, then three days coming back to life; their friend’s name was Jesus. 

 

The tone

 

Gethsemane has a wide selection of new, fresh, and contemporary music with rock, acoustic and classical themes.

 

100-word Summary

 

Two thousand years ago in Nazareth, Nadi and his brother, Levi, plan to attack and kill Pontius Pilate but Chloe, the love of Nadi’s life, bumps into Nadi moments before they are to strike.  Nadi must choose whether to fight with his brother or join Chloe. He joins Chloe and walks away from Levi.  Later that night, in the Garden of Gethsemane, Nadi realizes his friend Jesus is the Messiah, but not the warrior he was praying for.  This is the Passion, death, and resurrection of Jesus seen through Nadi and Chloe’s eyes.

 

500 word summary

Nazareth, Israel, 70AD.  Nadi, 63, sits around a campfire with his wife Chloe, 60. They sing “Fly down on me” as they reflect on events from 30 years ago. Adam, 30, their son introduces Nadi and Chloe to Mark who is writing his gospel. They tell Mark their version of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus.

Nazareth, 30AD. Jesus and Nadi work in the carpentry workshop.  Jesus sings “Simply Pray” to remind Nadi there is more to life than work and money.   During their Passover meal, Roman guards threaten to kill Nadi’s parents if they do not reveal the location of their son Levi.  Nadi prays to God to send His Warrior Messiah to rescue them from the Romans and sings “Praise Him.”  Nadi bumps into his brother Levi who convinces Nadi to leave and join him and his uprising against the Romans.

Three years later Nadi and Chloe bump into each other in Jerusalem. Chloe asks Nadi to join her and Jesus for supper. Nadi explains that he is with Levi and they have a mission they must complete to usher in the age of the warrior Messiah, Levi and Barabbas plan to kill Pontius Pilate. Chloe begs Nadi to leave Levi and sings “Shiny stars” to convince Nadi. Nadi considers leaving Levi and sings “No one ever questions.” Nadi realizes he wants to be with Chloe so turns his back on Levi and as a result, Levi is arrested and sentenced to death. They get married (I fell in love today”) and have an amazing wedding party (“The wedding dance.”)

Jesus prays in the Garden of Gethsemane while Judas brings the guards to arrest Jesus.  Judas sings “Time” as he betrays Jesus.  During a struggle with a Roman Guard Nadi runs away naked leaving behind his linen cloth.  It is now that he sees the Spirit descend on Jesus and he now sees that Jesus is the Messiah. The Roman guards sing “Man of our times” as they mock Jesus.

Crucified beside Jesus on the cross is Levi, who asks Jesus to remember him when he enters his kingdom.  Chloe sings “Waiting for you” as she watches Jesus die on the cross.  Nadi feels betrayed by Jesus, why would Jesus pretend he was the Messiah he had been praying for? Nadi runs away to the caves and prepares a noose to hang himself with and sings “Sometimes.”. As he is about to step off a rock, he hears Chloe singing “Been Believing” with the disciples. Chloe explains that she saw Jesus rise from the dead.  Nadi trusts Chloe and they sing “Call my name” before Jesus shows himself to Nadi.

Nazareth, 70AD. Nadi and Chloe sing “The Last Supper” as they finish telling Mark their story. Nadi takes his last breath and dies a happy man. A younger Nadi sings “Hallelujah” and our story ends.

 

 

Synopsis

Nazareth, Israel, 70AD.  Nadi, 63, sits around a campfire with his wife Chloe, 60. They sing “Fly down on me” as they reflect on events from 30 years ago. Adam, 30, their son introduces Nadi and Chloe to Mark who is writing his gospel. They tell Mark their version of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus.

Nazareth, Israel, and it is a normal day as Jesus and Nadi work completing orders  Joyfully Nadi and Jesus sing “Simply Pray” to remind Nadi there is more to life than work and money.   Jesus dances with Chloe who Nadi has feelings for.  Later that night Nadi sings “Part your heavens” as he prays to God to send his warrior Messiah.  Jesus, Nadi, Chloe, Joseph, (Chloe’s dad), Ethan, and Rachel (Nadi’s parents) prepare for their Passover meal. Ethan sings “Come to me” while enjoying a traditional meal together. 

 

Roman Guards (“The Romans”) barge into their house and threaten to kill Nadi’s parents if they do not reveal the location of their son Levi who is accused of stealing from a tax collector.  Nadi and Chloe stand in the aftermath attack and wonder what to do.

 

While on a walk, Nadi meets Levi, his troublesome brother. Levi asks Nadi to join him in the uprising in Jerusalem. He will train Nadi to be a mighty warrior. Nadi sings “Praise Him” as he promises to continue to trust in God and sing Hallelujah. Nadi decides to ride with Levi to Jerusalem to pray to God in the Temple to send his warrior Messiah. But they must leave right away, with no time for goodbyes.

 

With hope for their new future, Levi sings the upbeat “Heading north” as they ride away from Nazareth, ready to taste their new freedom.  During the night Nadi goes for a walk and bumps into Centurion Mike who attacked his mum that night. Nadi narrowly escapes and Centurion Mike shouts to Nadi that if he ever tries to return home, he will kill anyone who knows him. Nadi is now on the run. Nadi learns how to fight, and they plan their attack on the Romans.

 

Chloe learns that Nadi has left with his brother. Jesus invites Chloe to join him as he starts his new journey. Chloe agrees and they start their journey together. Chloe sings “Keep my secret” to Jesus, as she tells him how she loves Nadi. Jesus reassures her they will see each other again soon. 

 

“Miracles” is a montage of scenes covering 18 months showing Jesus being baptized by John, Jesus healing a blind man, feeding the 5,000, and raising a child from her death bed.

 

We drop back in on Nadi who is much stronger and is becoming a great warrior. Another 18 months pass and NADI trains (“This is our calling”) and full of hope, Nadi and Levi march into Jerusalem.  Nadi sings “What a life” as they prepare for their attack on Pontius Pilate.    

 

Fearfully, Nadi lies in wait to attack Pontius Pilate when he bumps into Chloe.  It is a tearful reunion and Chloe sits with Nadi as he waits for Levi.  Chloe sings “Shiny stars” as she proclaims her love for Nadi and pleads for him to leave Levi and join her and Jesus.  

 

As the time to attack quickly approaches, Nadi reflects on what he is about to do and sings “No one ever questions.” Nadi watches Chloe shopping when a Roman Guard bumps into her and she falls to the ground. The guard laughs at her and pushes her back to the ground. Nadi jumps out of his hiding place and saves Chloe. His cover is blown and Nadi has no option but to stand with Chloe and Jesus and watch Levi and the other zealots attack Pontius Pilate. Levi fails in his attempt to kill Pontius Pilate and he is arrested and taken away to be crucified.

 

Several months later and Nadi and Chloe get married and sing their epic ballad “I fell in love today.”   They dance their “Wedding dance” as the lights fade at the end of Act One.

 

Act Two, in the garden of Gethsemane, Jesus and Chloe take Nadi for a walk where Jesus sings the rock ballad “I will come” as he starts to have hesitations about what is going to happen to him, he will take his place without war and with God’s guidance. 

 

Judas brings the guards to arrest Jesus.  Judas sings the rock anthem “Time” as he betrays Jesus with a kiss on the cheek.  All the disciples panic and start to fight back before all running away and deserting Jesus. 

 

Amongst the confusion of Jesus’s arrest, Nadi reads Chloe’s journal about her time with Jesus (“Miracles – part 2”.)

 

Nadi decides to attack the Romans (“The Romans – part 2”) to try to free Jesus but during a struggle with a Roman Guard, he runs away naked leaving behind his linen cloth (“Jesus reveals himself.”)  It is at this moment that Nadi sees the spirit of the Lord descend on Jesus and realizes Jesus is their Messiah. 

 

The Roman guards sing “Man of our times” as they mock Jesus before taking him away to be crucified. 

 

The next morning Nadi is allowed in to see Levi in jail.  They sing “Swear with me” as they contemplate life and the choices they have both made.  Jesus is brought into the cell badly beaten and now Levi is shown that Jesus is his Messiah. 

 

He asks Jesus to remember him as he walks into his kingdom.  Nadi has mixed emotions, his brother is going to die, but he is saved as he now believes in Jesus.  Jesus is going to come down from the cross and destroy the Roman Empire. 

 

With the weight of the world on his shoulders, Jesus carries his cross to Golgotha. Jesus sings “Time – reprise” as he completes the Stations of the Cross.

 

“The Crucifixion” is when Jesus is nailed to the cross.  Crucified beside Jesus on the cross are Levi, the penitent thief, and Gesmas.  Ethan and Rachel have rushed to Jerusalem to see Levi who convinces them that Jesus is the Messiah.  Levi now suffers a heart attack. Levi dies.  Nadi comforts his parents and Chloe but reassures them that Jesus is going to come down from the cross and bring Levi back to lifeHowever, after Jesus painfully suffers on the cross, “Jesus dies.” 

 

Nadi stuggles with Jesus’s death (“Forsaken me”). Was he really the Messiah? Why would God allow his son to be killed? Nadi runs away from it all and hides in the caves where he and his brother spent three years.  Chloe sings “Waiting for you” as she takes in the awful and harrowing scene; is this still Jesus’ grand plan? 

 

Nadi prepares a noose to hang himself with as he sings “Sometimes.” As he is about to step off a rock, he hears Chloe singing “Been Believing” with the disciples. Chloe explains that she saw Jesus rise from the dead.  Nadi trusts Chloe and they sing “Call my name” before Jesus shows himself to Nadi.

Nazareth, 70AD. Nadi and Chloe sing “The Last Supper” as they finish telling Mark their story. Nadi takes his last breath and dies a happy man (“Nadi dies.”) A younger Nadi sings “Hallelujah” and so our story ends.

Characters - summary

Old Nadi – 63 years old and on his deathbed.

 

Nadi – 23, worked with Jesus in the carpentry workshop in Nazareth.  He is Jesus’ best friend and the Naked Disciple mentioned in Mark’s Gospel (Mark 14:51-52.)  

 

Old Chloe – 57 years old and as strong as ever.

 

Chloe – 17, is the daughter of Joseph of Arimathea and becomes Jesus’ closest disciple.

 

Jesus – 30, the Messiah according to some Jews and Gentiles at the time.

 

Levi – 31, is the penitent thief who died beside Jesus on the cross.  He is also Nadi's brother. 

 

 

 

Background

I have told the Passion, death, and resurrection of Jesus from the perspective of someone close to Jesus in a way that hasn’t been done before.  Nadi has no idea Jesus is the Messiah until the spirit of the Lord descends on Nadi while Jesus is being arrested by the Roman Guards in the Garden of Gethsemane. 

 

The libretto contains Hebrew words and lines from the Psalms and the Old Testament, words Nadi and Jesus would have said in their daily lives.  There are also contemporary references in both the music and words. 

 

Themes

The musical explores the relationships of Nadi with Chloe his childhood love, his older brother Levi, his parents Ethan and Rachel, Jesus, and his disciples.  The main theme is family and social interactions in this historical account of events that happened in Israel in 33AD.  Although there is death and suffering, there is more love and compassion. 

 

Potential Audience

Although “Gethsemane” deals with Jewish and Christian religious themes, it will appeal to anyone who loves a good story, regardless of religion, sex, creed, or age. 

 

“The Chosen” by Dallas Jenkins is a new TV streaming show that has attracted millions of viewers online and Christian music like Hillsong United, Hillsong Worship, Skillet, or Karl Jobe, have hundreds of millions of views on YouTube.

 

Chosen – Season One trailer - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K1-FoFj8Jbo

Chosen – Season Two trailer - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8tZ7cg4D_z8&t=58s

I Surrender – Hillsong United - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s7jXASBWwwI

What a beautiful name – Hillsong Worship - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nQWFzMvCfLE

Holy Spirit – Karl Jobe - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XPPMSfCdUng

Whispers in the Dark – Skillet - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B58OBfM-8A4&list=PLPcy1koaVSJRKAOUoeMSIMm8cb6FBIQlQ&index=19

Scores

All the music is available with lyrics, piano and guitar chords.

1.9 Last supper