Tim Minchin is to play Judas in a major revival of Jesus Christ Superstar.
He will star opposite Pussycat Dolls singer Nicole Scherzinger in an arena tour of Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice’s musical.
It opens at the O2 Arena in London this summer, with the character of Jesus cast via another TV television talent competition – a move Rice has branded ‘tacky’.
Minchin, an atheist, selected Heaven On Their Minds, a song from the musical, as one of his tracks on Desert Island Discs today.
He has previously understudied the role of Judas in two productions of the show in his native Perth, but never got to play it. He said: ‘I just love it because it is just pain and rock.’
While appearing on Radio 4’s Desert Island Discs today, Minchin also said he'd like a 'robotic sex doll' as his luxury item.
When host Kirsty Young asked him about his one luxury item, he said: ‘I assume lots of people say a robotic sex doll? But if it wasn’t something to occupy me in that way, I’d take my piano.’
Despite that choice, Minchin insisted he was ‘absolutely conservative of lifestyle... I don't take drugs, I like jogging,I've been mostly with one girl since I lost my virginity. I like my family, I don't swear in front of the kids.... I'm quite boring.'
Of his work on the musical adaptation of Roald Dahl's Matilda, he added: 'I'm not a magical thinker - I don't think I need my special undies on or my special pencil - I'm not superstitious about the process. I just took my childhood of reading Dahl and said, 'I know what this is' and wrote some songs.'
As well as the Jesus Christ Sueprstar track, his chosen Desert Island Discs included I Want You (She’s So Heavy) by The Beatles, Waterloo Sunset by The Kinks and I’m Alone by Deep Purple. His chosen book was Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut.
UPDATE: Since this story was first published it was announced that Mel C would play Mary Magdalene, not Nicole Scherzinger, and that Chris Moyles would play king Herold