John Legend fasting to go shirtless for Jesus Christ Superstar

R&B star John Legend is fasting in the lead up to Easter Sunday (01Apr18) so he will look his best going shirtless in live TV musical Jesus Christ Superstar.

The All of Me hitmaker will portray the titular character in the small screen adaptation of the iconic Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice rock opera, opposite singer/actress Sara Bareilles as Mary Magdalene, and rocker Alice Cooper as King Herod.

Certain scenes in the production require John to go topless, and he has already adopted a strict diet as he prepares to hit the stage as The Messiah – a lifestyle change which has recently posed a few problems for his wife Chrissy Teigen, who loves to serve up hearty meals at home.

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“Well right now, cooking is hard – cooking for Jesus, as I like to say – now that John is rehearsing for Jesus Chris Superstar,” the model and celebrity cookbook author tells Us Weekly.

However, Chrissy confesses his restrictive food plan couldn’t have occurred at a more suitable time, especially as she is heavily pregnant with their second child.

“I’m not supposed to be on my feet that much, so cooking is tough. I just get tired!,” she laughs. “But luckily, I’ve just entered that phase that my belly can’t fit as much food in it, which is great. And John has been rehearsing and he’s going to start fasting soon because he has a shirtless scene.”

Chrissy has been taking their two-year-old daughter Luna to the New York City set to watch dad in rehearsals for the big performance, and she is in awe of John’s work ethic, and that of his castmates.

“He’s taken this role so seriously. I don’t know how Broadway people do it. It’s all encompassing,” she shares. “I was at rehearsal yesterday and the amount of themselves and work they put (in) it, it’s so much work. I feel like they should do a full run, it’s only one show!”

The one-off production for NBC’s Jesus Christ Superstar Live in Concert will be broadcast from the Marcy Armory in Brooklyn on Easter Sunday.

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