After four years of work behind the scenes, “David,” a production by Sight & Sound, opened in theaters this year. Its story explores how an unassuming young shepherd made his way from the backside of the desert to become King.
The production is based on the Bible story of King David, who gained fame by killing Goliath, the Philistine giant that troubled the whole of Israel. It was on Sight & Sound’s three-hundred-foot panoramic stage and featured music and modern special effects. Of course, the music was inspired by the Book of Psalms, to which King David was a significant contributor.
The Inspiration Behind ‘David’
God referred to David as a man after His heart. This production does a great job of portraying David as not just an anointed king or fearless warrior but as a gifted poet. David never failed to express worship to God through his poetry, songs, and musical instruments, especially the harp.
Speaking to The Christian Post, the producer of the show, Ryan Miller, said, “I think David’s life is huge, so it just was a big challenge to try and distill it down. How do you get this into two hours and 15 minutes? Especially with all of the things in his life, those are just really cool themes. You have worship, and you have being a king, and being a godly leader, or a not godly leader, and the fear of the Lord, and so many really cool things.”
Miller says David’s attitude of seeking God’s heart struck him the most about the great Israelite King. He was moved to start researching David’s life before producing the show. David’s rise to the throne wasn’t void of challenges, from fighting wild animals to confronting the giant Philistine and several battles with Philistine soldiers. While David was victorious all through, He had one major battle to win, the one with himself.
Challenges Encountered During Production
No production is without its challenges, and ‘David’ is no different. Glenn Eshelman, the grandson of the founder of Sight & Sound, discussed the major challenge of this production. He said that portraying the scandals surrounding David’s life was the main worry.
In his words, “Everyone sees things through their own life experiences and belief systems and all of that. When you have this many people coming to experience something, you want to be so careful and honoring to people and their experiences, and also honoring to the characters and the scriptures and the Lord and all of that. It did feel really heavy, but I feel like we walked through it with a lot of prayer, a lot of studying, and then a lot of just people.”
Miller also revealed that he and his team had to consult counselors that had worked with people in similar situations as David’s. He said, “There’s such a freedom here that I don’t feel this pressure to be [like anyone else], trying to just do exactly what they did. There really is a lot of freedom to seek the Lord and be you and do the best you can within the groundwork that’s been laid. And it’s so freeing and life-giving to be able to do it because I think they are some major shoes to try and fill.”
Sight & Sound has been around for over four decades providing bible-based entertainment to more than 25 million individuals. They have theaters in Missouri, Branson, and Lancaster. The company began filming its live shows over the last decade and has released these performances on DVD. They also have a streaming channel as well as their latest venture, Sight & Sound films.