Different Roads Home and Theatre Charlotte are collaborating for the first time on the cult classic, “Sordid Lives,” a production that’s self-described as “a black comedy about white trash.”
Theater Charlotte and Different Roads Home first started talking about working together as a way to help the community. The combination of a classic show and a quintessentially Charlotte theater company — plus buy one get one free tickets exclusively for CharlotteFive readers — seemed like the right fit.
“What a pleasure for us to bring this hilarious comedy to the stage in Charlotte, especially with Ann Walker reprising her role,” said Dale Pierce, founder of Different Roads Home. “When we called and asked Ann, she didn’t even hesitate. What a joy! Ann is a great friend of the organization, as is the playwright Del Shores, it means a lot to have their support and approval on this project.”
As the number of local musical and theater venues vanish one-by-one in Charlotte, local nonprofits and theaters seem to need each other. These two entities each nurture the lives of local people, whether it’s making sure they are fed and supported to nurturing their minds and souls with a good laugh.
Different Roads Home takes care of the first part of that need, providing support services for those who are living with HIV/AIDS. People can help by donating their time and goods to their food pantry, which is especially important as the holidays approach.
Theatre Charlotte has taken over this second need through 460 stage productions for over half a million audience members at its 501 Queens Road location since 1941. Their mission statement is “Theatre Charlotte is a volunteer-based theatre company dedicated to creating outstanding theatre opportunities that are accessible and relevant to the people of the Charlotte region.” Indeed, ever since it was first known as the Little Theatre Charlotte in the late 1920s and 1930s in Charlotte, they have been committed to edifying local people.
“Sordid Lives” itself is a production that’s made people laugh, cry and cheer throughout the world. Creator Del Shores brought the original play to Los Angeles for its premiere on May 11, 1996, which went on to win 14 Drama-Logue Awards, plus transformed into a television show, a movie, and an upcoming play again here in Charlotte. The storyline is rich and relatable for Queen City locals: a family of Bible-thumping Baptists in a small Texas town attend the funeral of the family matriarch. Audiences will see family members and friends in the “Bible-thumping Baptists,” including Ann Walker reprising her original role as LaVonda DuPree.