Jerry Springer Opens to More Protests in Cardiff

Hundreds gathered outside the Wales Millennium Centre (WMC) to protest the arrival of Jerry Springer – The Opera in one of the largest protests yet on the controversial musical’s UK tour.

|TOP|Demonstrators stood outside the WMC brandishing placards and singing hymns to theatregoers as they arrived for the show, which the concert hall said it had sold more tickets for than at any of the other 20 venues in the UK tour.

Managers defended their decision to run the show saying it was their job to put on performances that were challenging as they reaffirmed their commitment to staging art that would “push the boundaries”, reports the BBC.

They also agreed to host a debate on the show which they said would allow everyone to express their views.

But the musical has met with protests at every stage of its tour from hundreds of Christians offended by what they regard as the blasphemous content of the musical which features Jesus, Mary and God as characters and contains up to 300 swearwords.

|AD|A letter calling for the show to be withdrawn drew the signatures of more than 100 church leaders, while the Archbishop of Wales Barry Morgan has also joined in the chorus of condemnation.

"The producer of this opera says that if he manages to incite religious hatred then the opera has done its job," he said. "I think that is a terrible intention for an opera to have.

"I have seen bits of it on the television and it really is blasphemous. It really does belittle the Christian faith and if something like this was produced about the Prophet Muhammad there would be a riot."

A massive 2.4 million people tuned in when the BBC broadcast the show in January 2005 prompting 63,000 people to complain to the BBC.

The WMC sold more than 1,200 tickets for the opening night of the opera’s six-day run in Cardiff alone. It will run in Cardiff until June 17th.