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Nashville community theatres open with new shows

by Bill Dorian

SistaStyle Productions presents The ‘D’ Word at Darkhorse

The Nashville-based theatre troupe SistaStyle Productions is opening with local playwright Mary McCallum’s latest play, The ‘D’ Word, focused on “…divorce, love, anger, and past demons”—revealing surprising secrets at the Darkhorse Theatre on Feb. 1.

Founded by McCallum in 2001, SistaStyle’s goal is to “expand and nurture the talents of African Americans and other performing artists by creating entertainment opportunities in the areas of theatre, film and television.”

The ‘D’ Word is all about whether or not individuals in a marriage can really live up to one another’s expectations without exploding under pressure. It is a drama/comedy delving into the subject of divorce by exploring a group of family and friends who are gathered for the 18th wedding anniversary of Marshall and Mona. The couple in question has a storybook life: Marshall is on the fast track at a major law firm, and Mona is a stay-at-home wife and mother.

As the weekend unfolds, drama follows their recently divorced best friends, Jason and Justina. Visiting parents and friends also supply their own substantial dose of drama to the anniversary celebration.

The ‘D’ Word is directed by Shawn Whitsell, a directing/acting favorite on stage and ‘behind the scenes’ at the Darkhorse Theatre. The cast features many of Nashville’s favorite actors, including: David Chattam, Tamiko Robinson, Alicia Ridley, Molly Breen, Mary McCallum and Jimmie Hill.

Show times include: Friday, Feb. 1 and Feb. 8 at 8 pm; Saturday, Feb. 2 and Feb. 9 at 8 pm; and Sunday, Feb. 4 at 4 pm. Tickets are $10. A portion of the proceeds from The ‘D’ Word will be donated to the Rutherford County Tornado Victims charity.

For more information about SistaStyle productions’ The ‘D’ Word and future shows, visit the website at www.sistastyle.net or call 615-476-6430. The Darkhorse Theatre is located at 4610 Charlotte Ave.

Since its inception, SistaStyle Productions has created opportunities for many talented entertainers, including writers, directors, actors and technicians to showcase their gifts. SistaStyle was founded in 2001 for the purpose of providing opportunities for ‘hidden’ talent in the Nashville community. The organization is committed to presenting the works of new artists as well as previously discovered talent to enrich the lives of Nashville audiences and the community.

Tennessee Women’s Theatre prepares Distracted

Next on stage for the Tennessee Women’s Theatre (to be presented at the Z. Alexander Looby Theatre) is the regional premiere of Distracted by Lisa Loomer.

Distracted focuses on nine-year-old Jesse, a boy who can’t sit still. He curses or he raps, and you can’t get him into (or out of) his pajamas. His teacher thinks the problem is Attention Deficit Disorder. His dad says, “He’s just a boy!” But his mama’s on her own quest for answers. Distracted offers a hilarious, provocative and poignant look at a modern family grappling with an epidemic dilemma: are we so tuned into our 24/7 info-rich world that we’ve tuned out what really matters?

The talented cast of Distracted includes Rebekah Durham, David Chattam, Keri Pisapia, Buddy Raper, Alice Raver, Patti Nicole Wheeler and introducing Juday Todd.

The Associated Press said Distracted is “…a sharply observant and humane play,” while the New York Daily News said it’s “…a chronically entertaining comedy.”

(Note: Distracted includes some adult language.)

Show times include: 7:30 pm, — Feb. 22, 23, 28, March 1, 2, 7, 8, 9; 10:30 am – Feb. 26, March 55; 2:30 pm – Feb. 24, March 3, 10.

Tickets are $15, adults; $12, students/seniors 60+; $10, all seats on Thursday evenings.

For more information or reservations, visit the website www.twtp.org or call 615-681-7220.

The Z. Alexander Looby Theatre is located at 2301 Rosa L Parks Blvd., Nashville, Tenn.

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