Chasing the Star takes a page out of the birth narrative of Jesus in Matthew 2 and expands on it in exciting, new ways. Magi Melchior (Garry Nation), Balthazar (Randy Spence), and Gasper (Bello Pizzimenti) lead a caravan across the desert, into Herod’s lands, pursuing the star. Along the way, they share their beliefs, their hopes, and their backstories as they travel, thwarting the advances of the evil King Herod (Ralph Lister) and a host of other dangers along the way.
Each of the magi (or wise men) has a backstory that impacts their search for the Messiah they have heard prophesied about and now pursue. One struggles with his abandonment as a child - and subsequent adoption by the monastic order; one struggles with his father’s lack of understanding of his call; one struggles with the finality of his relationship with a woman. While there is an overarching ‘galactic’ feel to the tale, the story of these three men is crucial to the storyline from DJ Perry.
From a broader view, this is also a well-known story from the Christmas narrative framed as part of an extensive battle between good and evil, the forces of Satan against those of Gabriel and the other archangels. While each of the characters involved have their own decisions to make, the machinations of Satan (Taymour Ghazi, Rance Howard) show the way that the weak-minded Herod is just a pawn in the battle for the souls of humanity.
Thanks to the creative script, the stories are interwoven in the past and the present, bobbing and weaving through the significant elements of the major players’ lives so that the audience can see the discovery of the Messiah in more personal (and epic) terms. Suddenly, these three magi - who are told they’ll be forgotten but their deeds forever remembered - have a more fleshed out impact on our Christmas story than the handful of voices they’re provided in Scripture.
While the audience knows how the story (or at least this particular chapter) ends, Chasing the Star allows for a lively amount of tension and excitement, given that no one really knows what happened to the magi; the violence and terror of Herod gives plenty to be feared! Still, this is a Christmas story, with the message of faith, hope, and love wrapped into it. The audience will walk away inspired, and challenged, to consider their own pursuit of the Messiah, to look to heaven for inspiration, to stand together in community, and to share the message they’ve received.