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Lowndes County Children’s Theater performs ‘The Church Fight’ play

By Fred Guarino
The Lowndes Signal

The Lowndes County Children’s Theater, under the direction of Sharice V. McGlown, presented “The Church Fight” by Ruth Gaines-Shelton, an African-American playwright, at Lowndes County Middle School in Fort Deposit on Thursday night.

McGlown said the play was written in 1925 by Gaines-Shelton and was significant because “it documents the creative activities of black women within their own communities during an era when most other avenues of opportunity were closed to them.” She said black women did plays like “The Church Fight” because it was an “African American play” and gave them the opportunity to show their own talents.

McGlown is a native of Tuskegee who later attended Bullock County High School. She is a 2009 graduate of Alabama State University with a B.S. in Theater Arts Performance.

The play, which was scheduled to be presented May 12-14, was performed by Lowndes County School children. It was put together in less than two months, said McGlown. She also said the play opened with a song written by Douglas Smith, a 10th grade student from Central High School.

Lowndes County Board of Education President Steven Foster said on behalf of the board, “I would like to offer our thanks to the many people of have made this evening possible. We are grateful to the students who are participating both onstage and backstage, to the their parents, to faculty and staff, and to many other volunteers and supporters and to each of you.”

The faculty and staff of The Calhoun School, Central High School, Hayneville Middle School and Lowndes Middle School thanked the parents for their cooperation in allowing the time for their children to prepare for the play and acknowledged the sponsorship of the Alabama Council on the Arts.

The cast included: Brother Ananias, Trevor Turner and Darryl Dixon; Brother Judas, Brandon Stringer and Douglas Smith; Sister Meddler, Brianna Gordon, Chiquita Moore and Monae McBride, Brother Investigator, Kendrekis Walters, Devin Betts, Rodzedrick Johnson; Sister Sapphira, Jasmine Gatewood and Bernisha Goldsmith; Sister Instigator, Jazmin Garrett and Frantavia Coleman; Sister Take-It-Back, Shanell Osborne; Sister Margaret, Karissa Hayes, Bernisha Goldsmith and Frantavia Coleman; Sister Two-face, Brianna Gordon and Tara Stringer; Sister Experience, Jasmine Gatewood and Karissa Hayes; Parson Procrastinator, Kendrekis Walters and Douglas Smith; Choir members, Trevor Turner, Jai’shavia Swinson, Javarious Johnson, Douglas Smith, Jessica Doss, Bernisha Goldsmith, Karrisa Hayes, Arkarius Patterson, Audrianna Thicklin, Brandon Stringer, Darryl Dixon, Mar’quett Thompson, Christul McCall, Tara Stringer, Brianna Gordon, Jasmine Garrett, LaStacey Taylor, Devin Betts, Chiquita Moore, Tre’Nora Ray, Layken Carter, Frantavia Coleman, Shanell Osborne, Valenica Scott, Aja Lee, Angel Lee, Jasmine Gatewood, Chiquita Moore, Deandre Johnson, Tamesha Rudolph, Rodneshia Hayes, Darica Hayes and Samecca Moore.

Director’s Assistance, LaStacey Taylor; Sound Technician, Gary White and Keasia Truitt; Light Designer, Keasia Truitt and Layken Carter; Set Crew, Demetrius Knight, Arthur Phifer and Kurtis Benion; Makeup Designer, T. Sellers, McGlown and cast crew; Costumer Designer, Sharice McGlown, Musicians, Desiree Mack; and Choir Director Sacouya Robertson.