Community theater has returned to Sikeston! This weekend, Sikeston Little Theatre returned to the stage with a new offering of one of its most popular productions of the past, "Godspell."
It has been eight years since the Little Theatre troupe has undertaken a production featuring local residents. The musical at the beautiful new Albritton-Mayer Center for the Arts on South Kingshighway opened Thursday night. Production times are 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday, then 8 p.m. March 1 and 2 and 2 p.m. March 3.
The contemporary play has a message for all among the words, music, drama and humor. The cast is strong, with many experienced actors. The musicians are exceptional. Add in the special effects and lighting by a focused backstage crew and you have a first-class production.
Those on stage are not only from Sikeston, but have traveled from Cape Girardeau and Dexter to be in this production. Their dedication and countless hours of rehearsal are evident in the final product. The actors include schoolteachers, managers, students, a pastor -- basically your neighbors and friends. The audience is drawn into the production as the actors make several energetic trips down the aisle to interact with those present.
Steve Beydler, the director, has done an excellent job preparing this play.He also portrays a convincing Judas. The lead role of Jesus is depicted superbly by Dale Frame. The other cast members are equally gifted -- particularly in their musical talents. Cast members include: Bryan Parker, Terry Sapp, Dennis Bohannon, Kate Hux, Teri Jett, Rick Lasley, Scott Nicklay, Maggie Pfefferkorn, Ashley Ray and Micah Reese. Each could be singled out for praise.
Although this play, written in 1970, is based on the gospel of Matthew and quotes scripture directly at times, don't expect to see a traditional Jesus in robes of biblical times. In this modernized version the parables of Jesus come to life. Some of the colorful costumes could be classified as "funky."
The story has been updated and localized to include references to "Who Wants to be a Millionaire", "Weakest Link" and our local Lambert's restaurant. It uses clowning, pantomime, charades and vaudeville among other actions to tell the story of Christ.
The music covers a wide range, offering something for everyone, from the international hit "Day by Day", to rock, soft-shoe and rap. The talented musicians providing accompaniment are: Harry Howard, John Engram and Jim Dumey.
This is a production not to be missed! The audience will smile, laugh and be touched. Reservations can be made for remaining performances by calling 471-6888. This first production in the comfortable attractive new theater offers a venue that has been missing locally for years. It is an asset to our community!