Peaches talks tonight's performance of 'Peaches Christ Superstar,' her adaptation of a classic rock opera
A lot can happen to an artist’s development in 10 years. Just ask Peaches. Primarily regarded as the high priestess of electro-sex and bass-rattling nihilism, the 42-year-old electroclash provocateur is one of the last people you’d expect to star in a 1970s rock opera -- about Jesus Christ, no less. This year, the 10th anniversary of her seminal sophomore album, “The Teaches of Peaches,” the Toronto-born artist is continuing on a monumental departure -- “Peaches Christ Superstar” -- her one-woman rendition of Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s “Jesus Christ Superstar.”
Accompanied by the virtuosic piano skills of longtime collaborator Chilly Gonzales, Peaches delivers every song from the play without pause. This performance also inspired a similar project, “Peaches Does Herself,” a musical based on 24 of her own songs that ran in October.
After a controversial and critically acclaimed debut in Germany and a string of U.S. tour dates, “Peaches Christ” makes its stop in L.A. tonight at the Orpheum Theatre. In a recent phone conversation, the artist known for such songs as “... the Pain Away” and “I Feel Cream” talked about how her (metaphorically) stripped-down performance satisfies a childhood dream and a need for bold avenues to get her creative juices flowing.
How does the opportunity to perform "Jesus Christ Superstar" as a one-woman show challenge you as an artist?
When I was 15, I got a copy of it from a boyfriend and I thought it was really cool because it told a story without having acting in it. I liked that you could tell the whole story without having parts in between that get you to the next song. And I thought, ‘I wonder if I could possibly pull off doing the whole thing myself without any sense of irony or parody?' And on top of that, having people who know me as Peaches watching me doing the last days of Jesus’ life is a big risk for me.