‘Baby Jesus’ Jeff lets star quality shine in live show
Rocker Jeff Anderson will find out tonight if he is one step closer to winning the lead role in Andrew Lloyd Webber's new arena musical.
The 21-year-old musician from Newtownards was unveiled at the weekend as one of 11 finalists in the running to play the eponymous role in Webber's revamped version of Jesus Christ Superstar.
Last night Jeff took to the stage in the first live show, performing Red by Daniel Merriweather in front of Lloyd Webber, West End star Jason Donovan, Spice Girl Mel C and comic/actress Dawn French.
The former Regent House pupil, who sings and plays guitar in rock band Wanted Alive, is the youngest contestant in the show.
Mel C told the bearded, blue-eyed Jeff — whom host Amanda Holden nicknamed Baby Jesus — that she often forgot he was only 21 and that when he was “in the moment” he created some magic. Lloyd Webber commented on his rugby prowess while at Regent House and asked him if it were true that he had dislocated his shoulder 22 times. When Jeff said it was true, the music maestro said: “Did you not take the hint?”
Jeff told him: “I did, that's why I'm here”, to which Lloyd Webber replied: “And I'm glad that you are.”
The winner of Superstar — which runs for the next eight nights — will take the lead part in a national tour alongside DJ Chris Moyles as King Herod, Mel C as Mary Magdalene and Tim Minchin as Judas.
The first elimination will take place tonight.