The amazing story of the Oberammergau Passion Play begins in 1633. In the ravages of the Thirty Years’ War, after months of plague, dying, and suffering, the townspeople of Oberammergau made a pledge with God, to act out the suffering, death, and resurrection of the Lord, Jesus Christ once very ten years in a play.
After fulfilling their pledge, it is said not one more soul died of the plague. By the middle of the 18th century, the play had become a local event attraction, and after nearly 400 years of unique continuity, and now the 42nd installment of the Passion Play in 2020. The play has become one of the most anticipated Christian events in the world welcoming an estimated 1.5 million visitors per installment.
The five-hour performance, with more than 2000 participants play the story of Jesus of Nazareth to an amazing open-air theatre. Almost half of Oberammergau’s population will dedicate their time, talent, and performances to act out the story. Beginning from his entry into Jerusalem, to his death on the cross, and to his resurrection.
A stunning event shown on the symbolic backdrop of the Scripture words by the disciple Luke: “And all the crowds that had assembled for this spectacle, when they saw what had taken place, returned home beating their breasts.” (Luke 23:48).
Brief History of the Play
The first Passion Play was performed in a humble wooden stage structure, on a cemetery next to the parish church in 1633. In 1830, the Passion Play was moved to its present location, on the northern edge of Oberammagau, the small town in the Bavarian Alps welcoming more than 4,500 spectators from around the world. The event theater had a major renovation in 1890 with additional stages and seats being put under a roof. After in 1930, at the 29th Passion Play installment an open air stage was built and extended. The theater has since had little change with the exception of installing comfortable seats on an incline providing spectators great sitting.
In the year 2020 Israel Tourism Consultants will operate amazing Passion Play Tours to Oberammagau 42nd installment, where once in a decade, the town is transformed into a major Christian pilgrimage event. The time to register for the Christian tour to the Passion Play is now.