Taproot to Close Season with WEDDING BELLES, 9/22-29
Pour yourself a glass of lemonade and get married all over again this fall with the regional premiere of Wedding Belles, the final production in Taproot Theatre's 34th season. When a bedraggled bride is found stranded at an East Texas bus station in 1942, the determined ladies of the Eufala Springs Garden Club leap into action! Lemonade, wedding cake and a gown are easy enough to come by... but where's the groom? This side-splitting comedy overflows with love, laughter and Southern hospitality at its best! Wedding Belles was written by Alan Bailey and Ronnie Claire Edwards. Directed by associate artistic director Karen Lund, Wedding Belles opens on September 24 and runs through October 23, with low-price previews on September 22 and 23, plus a pay-what-you-can performance on September 29.
A delightful story of love, generosity, bickering and forgiving, Wedding Belles introduces audiences to the world of four friends and garden club members each with their own story of love and matrimony, or lack thereof. Glendine's on husband number 7 or 8, Violet's a spinster, Laura Lee is widowed and Bobrita is happily married. An ordinary club meeting gets derailed when a helpless young bride stumbles into town and into their meeting. Desperately needing their help planning a wedding-and finding her groom, who's shipping off to the war-18-year-old Ima Jean surrenders herself to the varying degrees of experience, cynicism, optimism and fastidiousness of the four women who want the bride's wedding day to be nothing short of spectacular.
Creator of the Sanders Family series, including Smoke on the Mountain, Alan Bailey is best known for his musicals, but Wedding Belles presents his non-musical comedic sensibilities. He teamed up with Ronnie Claire Edwards to create this sweet story that was nominated for the American Theatre Critics Association Best Play Award. In addition to writing, Edwards has appeared on stage, film and television for decades, including as Carabeth on The Waltons, and appearances on The Torkelsons, Designing Women, Star Trek: The Next Generation and Murder She Wrote, among others. Wedding Belles premiered in October 2008 by One Thirty Productions in Dallas, in association with the Bath House Cultural Center and the City of Dallas' Office of Cultural Affairs.
Taproot Theatre's cast features Charissa Adams, Gretchen Douma, Karen Nelson, Kim Morris and Pat Sibley. The production team includes scenic designer Richard Lorig, costume designer Sarah Burch Gordon, lighting designer MonTy Taylor and sound designer Mark Lund. Anne L. Hitt serves as stage manager, Nikki Visel as dialect coach and L. Nicol Cabe as dramaturg.
After Wedding Belles, Taproot Theatre presents the world premiere of Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the Christmas Carol by Seattle playwright John Longenbaugh, opening November 26 and running through December 30, with previews November 19, 20 and 24.