Trisha Yearwood’s true talent and passion shone through as she portrayed Mary, mother of Jesus, in the Fox production of The Passion Live, a pageant displaying the last days of Jesus’ life told through contemporary pop songs.

The event happened live Sunday night (March 20) and Yearwood poured true emotion into her performance as she stood on stage in a gorgeous dark blue gown live before an audience in New Orleans and represented Mary’s point of view in between scenes from the story. Yearwood started her role with Whitney Houston’s “My Love Is Your Love,” altered slightly lyrically to fit the poignant tale. It’s clear Yearwood still has all the power and control in her voice she always had, trilling over the runs and belting the big moments with ease.

Yearwood went on to sing several more tunes interspersed throughout the two-hour-long show, partially held in remembrance of Hurricane Katrina and the devastation experienced in the city ten years ago. After Jesus held the Last Supper with his disciples in the narrative, Yearwood gave a moving rendition of Jewel's “My Hands,” and followed the scene in the Garden of Gethsemane with a newly arranged, pensive version of Jason Mraz’s “I Won’t Give Up.”

The singer had many in tears with her compelling performance of Ray Charles’ “You’ll Never Walk Alone” after Jesus’ arrest, backed by the incredible gospel choir on stage. Finally, she sang her last tune, “Broken” by alt-rock crossover band Lifehouse, alight by the impressive glowing cross brought in by a host of marching New Orleans citizens commemorating the events of Hurricane Katrina. She stood beside the bittersweet symbol of suffering and hope as she delivered the song and the audience felt the weight of the moment with her words.

Yearwood said she was nervous to play the role, but that husband Garth Brooks was being very supportive of the atypical endeavor. Hosted by Tyler Perry, The Passion Live featured American Idol alum and rocker Chris Daughtry as Judas, Christian artist Michael W. Smith as a disciple, and Seal as Pontius Pilate. It showed several scenes from the days leading up to Jesus’ death and resurrection in the Christian faith, which is celebrated at Easter, coming up March 27.

Yearwood has been on the road with her husband as he continues his record-breaking World Tour. She and Brooks were recently featured in a trailer for a PBS documentary about Loretta Lynn titled Loretta Lynn: Still a Mountain Girl, in which they performed a classic duet by Lynn and Conway Twitty called “After the Fire Is Gone."

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