‘A Southern Exposure’ makes Regional Premier at Liberty Hall
TYLER- A Southern Exposure, a multi-award winning comedy-drama by native Texan Kelley Kingston-Strayer, makes its Regional Premier at 7:30 p.m. Friday, November 1, at the historic Liberty Hall theatre in downtown Tyler.
First developed and produced by the Tony Award winning Barter Theatre for the 2011-2012 season, A Southern Exposure went on to productions from L.A. to Louisville with upcoming shows slated throughout the south. However, playwright Kelley Kingston-Strayer has restricted all theatrical productions in the Lone Star state until now.
“Texas is my home,” she explained. “You want (creative) control of your own back forty. Know what I mean?”
Creative control indeed. Not only did Kingston-Strayer write the play ̶ a play some theatre insiders predict will become a Southern American theatre classic; joining the ranks of Steel Magnolias and the Pulitzer prize winning Crimes of the Heart ̶ she will direct this all-female, four member cast.
Starring, Freda Ramsey, whose credits include AMC’s hit, Breaking Bad, Walker Texas Ranger, Blind Judgment and Good Guys, and co-starring, Audrey Ahern, who cemented her status as a hot rising actor as Ira in Undermain Theatre The Ghost Sonota; a performance acclaimed theatre critic Lawson Tate deemed “Mesmerizing.”Rounding out the cast are local veteran actors Frances Whiteside and Judy Griffin.
And if that isnt enough star power, actor Brad Leland, famous for his roles as Detective Sullivan in CSI: Miami, Coach Buddy Garrity in Friday Night Lights and Bradley Williams, appearing opposite Denzel Washington in the hit film Inside Man, will attend opening night.
Opening night the cast will be on hand at Jakes to sign autographs after the show.
APEX theatre will co-produce the show. “APEX theatre is this wonderfully creative heartbeat of a theatre producing daring, exciting works.”the playwright said. “I think APEX will quickly become a dominate force for live theatre in Tyler.”
When asked why she chose Tyler for the Regional Premier the playwright smiled. “For months, our production team poured over demographics of every city this side of the Mississippi: population, income, employment trends down to a city’s favorite brand of wart remover. But after many – sometimes heated – debates we had zip. Zero. No consensus. Then, at a cocktail party in Dallas, the Producer and I laid out the pros and cons of each city for several very savvy businessmen when an elderly gentleman who had been sitting in his wheelchair snoozing, cracked open an eye, ‘If you’re selling pants don’t go to a town that doesn’t wear pants …Tyler, Texas wears pants.’ then went back to sleep.
“I gazed at him for a long moment, looked at my Producer and said, Bingo.”
When: November 1, 2, and 9th 7:30 p.m.
Where: Liberty Hall Theatre, downtown Tyler
* a percentage of the box office benefits Meals on Wheels Ministries, Inc. 3001 Robertson Rd., Tyler, Texas 75701 campaign to End Senior Hunger By 2020.