Play about C. S. Lewis’ conversion to show at UF

The life of C. S. Lewis will take center stage in Gainesville on Monday with the play “The Most Reluctant Convert”, focusing on the conversion of Lewis over the course of years.

The play will run at UF’s Phillips Center starting at 7:30 p.m. and online ticketing shows plenty of seats still available.

Max McLean fills the spot of Lewis, a familiar role for him and the only character in the play. He wrote the play and has performed it for several years.

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A movie based on this play premiered Nov. 3 in select theaters nationwide and later aired on YouTube Originals. McLean served as narrator and an older Lewis, but the film also featured a full cast with characters including other notable writers like J.R.R. Tolkein.

The premier showings garnered $1.2 million with the limited, 400 theater opening, prompting a longer run.

The play centers on an atheist Lewis long before he wrote the books for which he is still remembered―”The Chronicles of Narnia”, “Mere Christianity”, “The Screwtape Letters” and the Space trilogy.

Unlike many theatrical productions, “The Most Reluctant Convert” only has one actor―McLean.

Bob Shettler is the president of the Florida Leadership Center, the group promoting the play at UF. He explained the production in an interview on The Shepherd Network.

“It’s a monologue of the journey of C. S. Lewis from atheism to christianity,” Shettler said. “And my understanding is that, if not all, 99 percent of the words [McLean] uses are words C. S. Lewis wrote.”

Shettler added that there will be a 20 minute Q&A time after the performance where McLean will field questions about Lewis and how he adapted his conversion story for the stage.

For information on the show and available tickets, visit the website for UF’s performing arts.

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