The Inspiration and Heart Behind the Moogerah Passion Play - 96five Family Radio

The Inspiration and Heart Behind the Moogerah Passion Play

The Moogerah Passion Play is held annually on the shoreline of Lake Moogerah and tells the story of Jesus through a cast of over 100 people.

By 96five Thursday 21 Mar 2024EasterReading Time: 2 minutes

Lake Moogerah is more than just a scenic escape for Brisbane and Toowoomba residents, it’s also host to Australia’s first permanent Passion Play venue, The Lake Theatre.

A Passion Play is a dramatic presentation or pageant depicting the Passion of Jesus Christ: his trial, suffering and death and the inaugural season of the Moogerah Passion Play took place in September 1993.

The vision since 1990 when founder Kosti Simmons first started working on the script was for the involvement of an entire community in the presentation of the Gospels including a purpose-built theatre incorporating a Sea of Galilee for the staging of scenes involving water and a fishing boat.

96five’s Alex Milne, host of Sunday Celebrations, caught up with Kosti Simmons, founder of the Moogerah Passion Play to learn about his passion for sharing the Easter story.

“I’m a writer and I had been wanting to write a Passion Play for a long time” Mr Simmons said.

“I was actually living in Spain but then my eldest daughter had a baby in Ipswich… so here I was in Ipswich one evening and I was meditating in a park, and I heard this interior voice say to me, very clearly. Very clearly, and twice, you must return to Australia.

“I knew what the Lord was talking about. So very rapidly, actually, I came back to Australia with my family and we set about looking for a suitable site for the Passion Play”

Mr Kosti Simmons, founder of Moogerah Passion Play

Mr Kosti Simmons receiving recogniation at the 2023 Christian Media Arts Australia Awards

Despite encountering obstacles along the way, Kosti’s unwavering faith and determination led him to discover the setting for the play on the enchanting grounds of Lake Moogerah. The picturesque landscape, adorned with breathtaking views of the lake and mountains, provided the perfect backdrop for the performances that would unfold in the years to come.

The Lake Theatre can seat anywhere from 800 to 1,000 people and Mr Simmons is pleased to see how far and wide people travel to see the Easter performances.

“They do come from absolutely everywhere and mostly in Southeast Queensland, of course” Mr Simmons said.

“But we have people coming from Gympie and then more places like that too. I remember once having people from Narromine in New South Wales, they came up in a bus to see us”.

“We’re not really professionals, but we certainly try very hard to be very good”.

The Moogerah Passion Play lasts approximately two hours with a 30 minute intermission and Mr Simmons encourages people to arrive with enough time to ensure they get a good viewing spot and don’t miss anything.

Performances run across Palm Weekend as well as Good Friday and Holy Saturday.

To learn more and to reserve tickets, visit the Moogerah Passion Play website.

Listen to the full interview in the player above.

All Images: Moogerah Passion Play Facebook