by Liltera R. Williams
Darryl Reuben Hall was born and raised in Jacksonville, Florida where he attended William M. Raines high school. He went on to gain a Bachelor’s degree in architecture from the University of Florida in Gainesville and later moved to Orlando, Florida to work for The Walt Disney Company. Hall’s career aspirations eventually led him to New York City, where his acting career began to take off. He has toured nationally and appeared on Broadway stages and television screens alongside many famed actors and actresses including Eartha Kitt, Phylicia Rashad and Chris Rock. He now presides as the founder and Executive Artistic Director of Stage Aurora, a theatrical company launched about seven years ago that has produced over 25 productions. Hall’s most recent original production, Reality Check, will be his third live stage production at the Florida Theatre taking place on August 7th and 8th at 8 pm.
Darryl Reuben Hall’s Reality Check brings together eight soulful strangers who’ve come together to live in The House of Song for weeks as cameras follow their every step. On the journey towards the good life, between drinks, eating and chatter, each housemate learns a life lesson about themselves and one another in the areas of jobs, friendship, hate, love, responsibility, family, and honesty.
The scripted satire was written by Hall himself and is based on a series of reality television shows including: America’s Got Talent, American Idol, College Hill, Real World, and Intervention. The production will shed comedic light on the overabundance of reality shows dominating today’s television industry. Behind the foolery and irrelevance, Hall recognized some of the hidden messages within these shows and thought it would be a good idea for the messages to be portrayed on stage “in an effort to enlighten minds.”
Auditions for Reality Check took place about two months ago. Close to 40 people auditioned, but only a selected few were chosen to participate in the show. The cast includes: Rebecca Morgan, Moira Rossi, Antonio Vizcalya, Michael Wolkowski, Wade Pritchett, Rucha, Jenny Cernikovsky, Rashad Yancy, Michael Bend, Ishmael Blue, Tonya L. Brown, Pamela S. Bryan, David Jon Davis, Aisha George, Stephanie Hill, Lolita Jennings, Zerick Jones, Joshua Levy, Rosalind McCoy, Marilyn McNair, Alvin O. Mitchell, Joycelyn Petty, Dee Quaranto, Chivon Rivers, Joshua Scarver, Ryan Sinclair, Vanetta Sherrod, Donna Walter, and Elliott Wimes.
These actors were given seven weeks to perfect the script with the help of acting coach, Noble Lee Lester, who stepped in for three weeks to assist as Hall traveled back and forth from Jacksonville to New York. The cast also features the FAMU Strikers All-Stars, best known for their appearance on MTV’s America’s Best Dance Crew. Reality Check will fittingly incorporate a Michael Jackson ‘Thriller’ tribute to pay homage to the recently deceased King of Pop.
Darryl Reuben Hall’s future 2009-2010 productions include: Darryl Reuben Hall’s Frat House-a tour of selected Historically Black Colleges and Universities featuring a step-off between guest Greek organizations while following the journey of an individual as he goes through the hazing process of pledging a fraternity, October 2009-Love Letters starring T’Keyah Crystal Keymah (That’s So Raven, In Living Color), December 2009-God’s Trombones by James Weldon Johnson, February 2010-To Kill A Mockingbird, May 2010-Ain’t Misbehavin featuring Grammy and Tony Award Winner Melba Moore, September 2010-The Color Purple.
Tickets for Reality Check are $15 Advance/Both Shows, $15/Door for Students and seniors with proper I.D., $20/Door for adults. For more information, call Stage Aurora at 765-7372.
Darryl Reuben Hall Presents… REALITY CHECK
by Liltera R. Williams