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Lilies of the Field
a Drama w/ Comedy & Music
by F. Andrew Leslie

COMPANY : Peachtree Players
VENUE : College Street Playhouse
ID# 3527

SHOWING : October 01, 2009 - October 04, 2009



This play (popularized by the 1962 movie starring Sidney Poitier)follows the odyssey of Homer Smith, a man who was just passing through a southwestern town but ends up staying much longer than he thought. Homer stops for some water, but soon finds out he is part of a greater plan shared by Mother Maria Marthe and the order of German nuns whom he meets there. This heart-warming play is filled with music and appropriate for all ages.

Director Joanie McElroy
Asst. Director/Stage Mgr. Elizabeth Bigler
Scene Painter Katy Clarke
Set Construction Tom Heagy
Sound Design Robert Peterson
Lighting Design Gary L White
Fr. Murphy Sean Casey
Jose James Connor
Pedro German Correa
Sr. Gertrude Hannah Green
Livingston Ray Greene
Sr. Elizabeth Kathleen Hulsey
Mother Maria Marthe Margaret Masak
Homer Brad Raymond
Sr. Albertine Dot Reilley
Miguel David Richards
Altar Boy Kevin Rust
Sr. Agnes Caroline Savini
Fiesta Dancer Mary Taylor
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Gilded Lilies
by playgoer
Sunday, October 4, 2009
Peachtree Players are putting on a satisfying production of "Lilies of the Field." The set, sound, and performances are all effective and well-coordinated. Joanie McElroy's direction keeps the play moving along, not letting the collection of short scenes turn into a series of static vignettes.

The play is both anchored and propelled by the powerhouse performance of Brad Raymond as Homer Smith (or "Schmidt," as the German nuns pronounce it). His classically trained voice brings pure tones and passion to his solo a capella songs, and his acting skills are the equal of that wonderful voice. His glances and asides invoke laughter from the start, but his performance grows in depth as the show wears on.

I am not fond of the naration done by the character of Jose, since I feel it shows a little laziness on the playwright's part. James Conner's performance, though, is very easy to sit through, with a nice Hispanic lilt to his speech and a pleasant singing voice, accompanied by his decent guitar playing. His acting scenes work very well too, with a very naturalistic flavor.

Other especially fine work is done by Sean Casey as a priest and German Correa as a laborer. None of the performances are sub-par, though. The nuns, under matching habits, don't always come across as distinct personalities, but their singing is a pleasant counterpoint to Brad Raymond's, and they bring an infectious joy to their English lessons.

The German of Mother Maria is excellent, as would be expected from German-born Margaret Masak. Though not as gruff as some interpretations, her take on the role works. The blend of a quiet, implacable Mother Maria with a more voluble Homer keeps the comedy going.

The production flows nicely, making good use of the limited space at the College Street Playhouse. The only problem was at the start of act two, when a late audience member blocked the entrance of the first actor from the house's side aisle. And when that's the "big problem" in the show, you know it's pretty darn good. [POST A COMMENT REGARDING THIS REVIEW]


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