Artworks to present Steel Magnolias as Intimate Theater
Artworks will present Steel Magnolias as its next Intimate Theater production in June, featuring an all-female cast and a mostly female production crew. The stage play, written by Robert Harling, is based on his experience with his sister’s death from diabetes-related complications. The play is a comedy-drama about the friendship bonds among a group of Southern women in northwest Louisiana. As the title suggests, “the female characters are as delicate as magnolias but as tough as steel.”
Samuels said she chose this play in light of the #MeToo movement because Steel Magnolias is about the female empowerment and about women taking charge of their lives. She also thought the production, set completely in Truvy’s Beauty Spot, would work well for Intimate Theater at Artworks.
“It’s sad, and it’s funny,” said director Wendy Samuels. “It’s one of those shows where you’re crying and you’re laughing at the same time, and it just pulls on your heartstrings. Steel Magnolias is going to be a little different from the Intimate Theater productions we have done before.”
The cast will feature Jamie Samuels as Truvy, Kelley Samuels as M’Lynn, Audree Stephens as Shelby, Suzette Compton as Ouiser, Ginny Kerwin as Clairee, and Emily Aslakson as Annelle.
The performances will be Thursday, June 28 through Saturday, June 30 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, July 1 at 2:30 p.m. in the Chemical Bank Lower Gallery in the Artworks building in downtown Big Rapids.
Tickets are $15 and are available at The Painted Turtle Gift Shop in the Artworks building or online at EventBrite. The event is sponsored by Nancy Baldwin.
Photo: Actors (front row, left to right) Suzette Compton, Kelley Samuels, Ginny Kerwin, (back row, left to right) Jamie Samuels, and Emily Aslakson rehearse Steel Magnoliasin Truvy’s Beauty Spot. Not pictured is Audree Stephens, who plays Shelby.