There are more than 5,300 inmates at the Louisiana State Penitentiary at Angola. Nearly 4,000 of them are serving life without parole. Last month, the Angola Prison Drama Club staged a play unlike any other in the prison’s experience.
The Life of Jesus Christ featured 70 inmates, men and women acting together for the first time — in costume, with a real camel, performing for the general public. For the untrained actors, this production held special meaning as they saw pieces of their own lives revealed in the characters they played.
Listen to the full story on NPR. / Prisoner Portraits by Deborah Luster.
above: Terrence Williams / Roman Soldier. Convicted of murder, serving life sentence at Angola. below: Levelle Tolliver / Judas Escariot. Convicted of 2nd degree murder, serving life sentence at Angola.