The Amen Corner at Stage Aurora

Stage Aurora’s The Amen Corner

Sister Margaret is concerned about her grown son, David (DIAMOND PAULK), who plays piano for the church, but has been backsliding, missing church, and associating with Sister Margaret’s estranged jazz musician husband Luke (DAVID EMANUEL).

Things come to a head in Act Three, when the congregation considers removing Sister Margaret as the head of the church after they discover she doesn’t always practice what she preaches. Margaret had told church members that her husband left her many years ago, actually, she left him because of his drinking. (Apparently standing by your man for better or worse was preached in her church). Other complaints included her lack of control over the actions of her son, and allowing her husband who appears to be dying of a respiratory illness to live in her home, but then not taking care of him. And she may be stealing funds from the church.

The show runs a little over two hours with no intermission. It starts off with a very rousing church service with a inspiring sermon by Sister Margaret and songs by Margaret’s sister Odessa (RUTH CHARLENE DAVIS) and Sister Moore (KATHY SURCEY), who in fact covets Margaret’s position and provides much of the humor in the play.

Others in the cast are mainly on stage during the church scenes, and include JADE HALLS, FELICIA EWING, SHONDA BROWN, AMANDA VAN ALLEN, DANTE BUCKSON, TERESA SMITH and KACHE MUMFORD. This supporting cast was filled with excellent gospel singers, and gave the church scenes a feeling of authenticity.

   

About Dick Kerekes & Leisla Sansom

The Dual Critics of EU Jacksonville have been reviewing plays together for the past nine years. Dick Kerekes has been a critic since 1980, starting with The First Coast Entertainer and continuing as the paper morphed into EU Jacksonville. Leisla Sansom wrote reviews from time to time in the early 80s, but was otherwise occupied in the business world. As a writing team, they have attended almost thirty Humana Festivals of New America Plays at Actors Theatre in Louisville, Kentucky, and many of the annual conferences sponsored by the American Theatre Critics Association, which are held in cities throughout the country. They have reviewed plays in Cincinnati, Chicago, Miami, Sarasota, Minneapolis, Orlando, New York, Philadelphia, Sarasota, San Francisco, Shepherdstown, and The Eugene O’Neill Center in Waterford, Massachusetts. They currently review about one hundred plays annually in the North Florida area theaters, which include community, college, university, and professional productions.

august, 2022

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