Reformation musical relives Luther times

Martin Luther, an iconic Christian leader, who changed the course of history, asked a haunting question we as Christians still ask ourselves today: Have I done enough to please God?

The answer to this question took him on a unique path on which he discovered that God is all about grace and that grace cannot be bought, it is a gift. This year Christians all over the world celebrate an unforgettable piece of history, the Reformation, led by Luther. Add Life Productions, known for a list of successful musicals in Afrikaans, also put the spotlight firmly on the Reformation with their original musical, Houtkruis: Die Musical. This show stopping theatre production is back on stage for only four concerts — to again highlight the reformation period, and how much it means to the modern day Christian.

Renier and Lise-Marie Keyser started Add Life Productions about 10 years ago introducing Houtkruis: Die Musical, as their first theatre production. Over the years, about 55 000 people saw the production and gave testament to the quality and popularity of the show. Renier, who wrote and produced the show, is a storyteller by heart. After searching for a unique story to tell, he fell in love with Martin Luther and the reformation history. Out of his research of that time period, Houtkruis: Die Musical, was born.

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Although Luther does not feature as a character in the play, this production features the most important aspects of the times Luther led the reformation, including the selling of religious artefacts, the role the Catholic church played and of course the importance of the reformation. “We should be reminded that people gave their lives for the reformation, and because of that we can enjoy a real relationship with God today,” Keyser says.

The play also features some top Afrikaans Christian songs sung by a star-studded cast. The cast includes Jannie Moolman, in the lead role, Zita Pretorius, Marno van der Merwe and Rouel Beukes.

“South African Christians tend to be religious and their beliefs are based around the traditions of the churches that shaped them. Although there is nothing wrong with it, we should remember God’s grace and that it cannot be earned through works.”

Houtkruis: Die Musical will take you back to the reformation, and gives us new insight into the struggles of those Christians centuries ago. The show will take place November 3 to 5 at the Choose Life church in Pretoria and tickets is available at

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