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Aiming to share the Gospel with a broader audience, the Repertory Company of Faithful Central Bible Church premiered its debut production of ‘Steel Magnolias’ at the Hudson Theater.
“The church supports actors and theater,” said Director Dino Shorte, “and they sent us out as disciples to show the world what good strong Christian actors and actresses can do.”
The play, written by Robert Harling, revolves around the strong bond between six women in the fictional town of Chinquapin, Louisiana. The show’s title implies that ‘characters are a delicate as magnolias, but tough as steel.’
The cast is lead by veteran actor, Carl Gilliard. Also, the performance by Dayna Dooley, who played the wise cracking and comical Ouiser Boudreaux, kept the audience entertained with facial expressions and physical comedy antics of an older woman.
Starring with her sister, Kimberly Dooley excels as Shelby Eatenton-Latcherie whose southern drawl and pink fashions drew the affections of the audience and pulled the story line to its emotional conclusion.
Gilliard, known for his roles in the movies ‘Inception’ and ‘Coach Carter,’ is proud of the actresses and production crew. He produced ‘Steel Magnolias’ along with Derrick D. Pete and looks forward to a positive future with FCBC Reparatory Company.
“We do a comedy sketch show called, ‘Time To Laugh,’ coming up in September and we have some serious dramatic web series coming up as well,” said Gilliard.
As for the highlights of the ‘Steel Magnolias’ run, Aba Arthur, who played the shy, but religious Annelle Dupuy-Desoto, responded, “The first show [was a highlight], because we have been working on this for so long, and just getting together on the stage and being able to vibe with each other, felt so good and so complete.”
“I think also because it’s a ‘church production,’ people have a certain idea of what it is going to be. But, when they come and they see that we are serious about what we are doing and that we have a certain level [of professionalism] that we are striving to attain, they are pleasantly surprised. So, that’s nice for us,” noted Sonya Leslie Shepherd, who played the sassy salon owner Truvy Jones.
“Our church is very Biblically-based, so we want to put on a production that had a certain level of drama to it, but also had some comedy, pathos; the whole nine,” added Shorte.
For more information about the FCBC Repertory Company, visit faithfulcentral.com.