You will laugh until the tears flow at the persiflage, raillery and repartee coming from Coastal Stage Productions’ riotous presentation of “Southern Hospitality,” now in place at The Shed Event Venue in Port Royal. The comedy will lighten your day and keep you smiling long after you leave the theater.
But I must tell you, “Southern Hospitality” ends at the matinee on Sunday, so book your tickets and plan to take in and enjoy this hilarious show.
“Southern Hospitality” follows the ups and downs – the travails – of the residents of Fayro, Texas, generally, and the over-the-top events in the lives of the Futrelle sisters, Frankie (Pam Flasch), Twink (Robyn Erickson), Honey Raye (Kay Owen), and Rhonda Lynn (Debra Reier) specifically.
Joining those incredible women, and I mean that in every sense of the word, are Justin Waverly (Jayme Brinson), John Curtis Bunter (JT Chinn), Gina Jo Waverly (Alex Clark), Raynerd Chisum (Bill Dalton), Dub Dubberly (Dave Falls), Geneva Musgrave (Christine Grefe), D. Dayva Davidson (Susan Johnson), Iney Dubberly (Margy Oehlert) and Buck Strickland (Amos Hummell).
Things were going downhill in Fayro when the Super Smart-Mart and the rendering plant closed, and longtime residents had given up hope for the town and were moving away in droves.
But there was happy news that trickled down, and word got out that Senora Salsa, a company in Connecticut, might be coming to Fayro to consider opening a salsa factory right there in the heart of their beloved town.
That was all our famous quartet of sisters needed to hear. In a Texas minute, they rose to the amazing opportunity to save their beloved community from disappearing.
The sisters had just a few days to come up with a plan that would charm the representative from Senora Salsa into believing that their community was loaded with amazing people who shared a true love of each other, among other things, oh, and an interest in civic spirit – actually an incredible undertaking.
I don’t want to give it all away, but just let me share that the plans they developed ran the gamut from a beauty contest, a wedding and a petting zoo – right up to a Civil War re-enactment!
Along the way we had the good fortune to meet and to laugh at the side issues that faced the other characters involved in this incredible plan. You won’t be surprised when I tell you that all was not rosy among everyone in Fayro, and there was a fair amount of discord – things did get physical – as matters of jealousy, marriage, poisoning, inheritance and mistaken identity emerged during those action-packed days in August.
The play, written by Jones, Hope and Wooten, is directed by Luke Cleveland and assisted by Margy Oehlert. The two do a masterful job of casting the perfect people, building on their special gifts, taking advantage of the most phenomenal scripts, and then bringing it all about with enormous success.
Now would be the perfect time to point out that this gifted, talented and dedicated cast involves local talent with impressive theater experience, who, along with the production staff, the crew members, box office personnel even hosts and greeters, are completely volunteer. What a tremendous effort and what a phenomenal outcome.
Artist, musician, teacher and writer Nancy K. Wellard focuses on portraying and promoting the cultural arts, first in Los Angeles and, for close to 30 years, in the Lowcountry. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Showtimes are 8 p.m. for evening performances and 2 p.m. for the Sunday matinee, and seating is general admission. The Shed-Event Venue is almost at the end of Paris Avenue on the right in Port Royal.
Upcoming from Coastal Stage Productions
- “Becky’s New Car”: May 25-27 and June 1-3, The Shed Event Venue
- “Sex Please, We’re Sixty”: Aug. 24-26 and 31 and Sept. 1-2, The Shed Event Venue
- The Paris Dancers and 2nd Act Performing Company: Sept. 22-23, Main Street Theatre Hilton Head Island
- Tennessee Williams’ “A Streetcar Named Desire”: Nov. 30 and Dec. 1, 2, 6, 9, The Shed Event Venue