Bringing the 39th Summer Season to a close at the historic Abbeville Opera House will be a brilliantly written southern comedy by the authors of many of the Opera House’s wildly popular productions of seasons past, Jessie Jones, Nicholas Hope and Jamie Wooten. Dearly Beloved is a story centering around the zany Futrelle Sisters and their plans for a wedding in the little town of Fayro, Texas.
In the Opera House production, the Futrelle Sisters will be played by Opera House veteran actresses Claire Duffle as Honey Raye, Lisa Edwards as Twink and Kimberly Broome as Frankie. The three sisters are throwing a wedding and Frankie has almost made herself sick with elaborate preparations for her daughter Tina Jo's antebellum-inspired ceremony. The rumor mill in their small town of Fayro, Texas is working overtime. No surprise there, the Futrelle Sisters have never been strangers to gossip. After all, they did survive the scandalous breakup of their -famous gospel-singing trio, The Sermonettes. But Twink's desperate attempts to get her boyfriend of fifteen-and-one-half years down the aisle, Frankie's ongoing conversations with their dead mother and Honey Raye's tendency to race to the altar at every opportunity have kept tongues wagging for years.
In spite of her own marital problems, Frankie has held steadfastly to the hope that she can pull off one "final Futrelle occasion" with elegance, style and the help of the cantankerous wedding coordinator, Miss Geneva, played by another Opera House favorite actress, Mary Jane Swygert, who runs the local floral shop/bus depot. But on the day of the nuptials, Frankie's hope begins to dim when she discovers Twink's alternative solution to an expensive catered wedding dinner is a potluck supper sponsored by Clovis Sanford's House of Meat. When the prodigal Honey Raye arrives at the church consumed by hot flashes and a steely determination to right old family wrongs, Frankie’s hope is shaken. It is lost completely when word reaches the church that Tina Jo, played by Amber Swann, and her finance have fled Fayro and eloped. The Sisters ultimately pull together to find ways to keep the unsuspecting guests in the pews.
The large and talented Opera House ensemble also includes Brad Christie as Dub, Mary Anne Campbell as Nelda Lightfoot, Brian Sorrow as Justin, Rick Dettmann as John Curtis, Blaine Hicklin as Wiley Hicks and Lisa McConnell as Patsy Price. According to Opera House Executive Director Michael Genevie, who is directing the show, “if you enjoyed the popular Opera House production of Dearly Departed, you will love Dearly Beloved.”
Performances are set for Friday and Saturday, August 11, 12, 18, 19, 25 and 26. Friday shows are at 8pm and Saturdays are at 3pm and 8pm. According to Opera House Business and Box Office Manager Kathy Genevie, all of the 3pm Saturday matinees tickets are going quickly.
“We do have some great seats available for most of the evening performances,” she says, “but tickets are going fast!” For more information call the Opera House Box Office at (864) 366-2157 Monday through Friday from 10am to 2pm. Reservations may be made over the telephone with a Visa, MasterCard, Discover or American Express or by purchasing tickets on line at www.theabbevilleoperahouse.com