Saturday’s class production of Terrence McNally’s play, Corpus Christi, was canceled by college officials at Tarleton State University in Stephenville, Texas, after Lt. Governor David Dewhurst condemned McNally’s 1998 play, which features a gay Jesus figure named Joshua. In a press release, Dewhurst said that “no one should have the right to use government funds or institutions to portray acts that are morally reprehensible to the vast majority of Americans.” He also called the play by the Texas-born author a “lewd display.”
Tarleton officials originally defended the students’ right to perform the play but canceled it for safety concerns after receiving threatening messages and protests from church groups — and increasing campus security in response. This meant that the entire program of four one-acts was halted only the day before the performance.
Theater Jones reports that Corpus Christi will be performed in North Texas soon but announced no other details.