Cumberland County Playhouse Unveils 24th Year of SMOKE ON THE MOUNTAIN
Smoke On the Mountain, the ever popular bluegrass/gospel musical, kicks off its 24th year at Crossville's Cumberland County Playhouse, on Friday, June 2, as director Weslie Webster welcomes two new members to the famed Sanders Family Singers.
DeeAnna Etchison (Gypsy) and Cory Clark (The Little Mermaid) make their Sanders Family debuts as twins Denice and Dennis in the 2017 rendition of Smoke on the Mountain, with the production headed by Playhouse veterans Lauren Marshall (The Odd Couple) and Daniel W. Black (now playing Carl Perkins in Million Dollar Quartet) as the family matriarch and patriarch.
Joining them are the recently married Jensen Crain-Foster (The Addams Family) as June Sanders, Brett Mutter (A Sanders Family Christmas) as Pastor Mervin Oglethorpe and Joseph Wilson (Mamma Mia) as Uncle Stanley.
"Smoke on the Mountain is one of my all-time favorites, and this year I'm thrilled to welcome Cory and DeeAnna as the newest members of the Sanders Family!" Webster explains. "Both DeeAnna and Cory started at the Playhouse as students, then each worked four years as an intern. After graduating from college, each of them has returned as a resident company member."
What's all the fuss about? What keeps audiences coming back year after year for Smoke on the Mountain? "It's a Saturday night in Mount Pleasant, North Carolina, and Reverend Oglethorpe, the enthusiastic new minister of Mount Pleasant Baptist Church, has invited the Sanders Family Singers to provide an uplifting evening of song. The audience becomes the congregation as the Sanders Family weaves together two dozen traditional and original hymns, along with their stories of witness, serving them up with heaping helpings of laughter. Under the scrutiny of a congregation that's skeptical about the whole notion of a 'Saturday Night Sing,' one thing after another goes awry as the Sanders family reveal their true - and hilariously imperfect - natures. The honesty, humor and faith of this beloved Playhouse tradition connect strongly with audiences of all ages and faiths, who find themselves part of a very special afternoon or evening."
Smoke on the Mountain runs June 2 through August 10. Tickets may be reserved by calling (931) 484-5000 or online at www.ccplayhouse.com.
Currently at the Playhouse: A Second Helping: The Church Basement Ladies Sequel in the Adventure Theater through May 27; and Million Dollar Quartet on the Mainstage through June 9. Upcoming: Beauty and the Beast on the Mainstage, June 16 through August 20.