Up & Coming Weekly

June 05, 2018

Up and Coming Weekly is a weekly publication in Fayetteville, NC and Fort Bragg, NC area offering local news, views, arts, entertainment and community event and business information.

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Page 14 of 32

14 UCW JUNE 6-12, 2018 WWW.UPANDCOMINGWEEKLY.COM Fayetteville After 5 presented by Bud Light brings Slippery When Wet, the Ultimate Bon Jovi Tribute Band, to Festival Park. A local summertime en- tertainment staple, Fayetteville After 5 is set for Friday, June 8. "This is the second installment in our Fayetteville After 5 summer concert Se- ries," said Sarah Suggs, marketing and events coordinator. "We open at 5 p.m. with the music beginning at 6 p.m." The event usually opens with local talent, and this concert is no different. This month's evening will feature local band Matrix as the opening act. The purpose of the Dogwood Fes- tival Organization is to provide free events for the community. "The After 5 series really helps us raise more money to go towards our Spring Festival," said Suggs. "We want to make the festival bigger and better each year." Suggs added that each event is a fundraiser for the next event. Slippery When Wet was formed in 2003 by Jason Morey. The band mem- bers are Jason Morey, Adin Stickle, Jim- mi Botsford and John Martin. The band has played over 1,500 shows through- out the United States. They were the headliners for more than 60 cruises on the Royal Caribbean Cruise Line and played for the pre-game of Super Bowl 48 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. In 2018, Morey was chosen to perform as the only impersonator to Jon Bon Jovi in the Legends in Concert show. "We are hoping this will be the most successful After 5 season yet," said Suggs. "We look forward to a huge crowd – so come out and enjoy good food and music." Food trucks will be on-site. Beer will be available for purchase. No outside food, coolers or beverages will be permitted. Bring your blankets and chairs. Gates open at 5 p.m. The concert is free and open to the public. For more information, call 910-323-1934. Fayetteville After 5 presents Slippery When Wet by DR. SHANESSA FENNER EVENTS Slippery When Wet, the Ultimate Bon Jovi Tribute Band, is set to headline Fayetteville After 5 in Festival Park on June 8. The show runs through June 10. Save the drama for ya mom- ma, they say. But what if the drama is with your mom, your dad, your siblings, your part- ner – everybody? Well, then, you get a Tennessee Williams play. The last show of the Gil- bert Theater's 2017-18 season is Williams' "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof." Emotions and tempera- tures ran high on the small stage of the Gilbert, along with a warning to the audience about a broken air condition- ing system. Fortunately, the heat works in the play's favor. You feel like a devil sweat- ing your sins out in a packed Sunday church. And there's plenty of sin to go around. One summer day in the South, a rich, dysfunc- tional family gathers to celebrate a birthday but disintegrates under the weight of their hate. Their lies. Money. Sex. You name it, they fight about it. Who is sleeping with whom? Who is getting the in- heritance? What is not being said? Questions swirl until you are stif led and exhausted. The play opens with a voyeuristic view of our main characters, husband and wife Brick (James Hartley) and Maggie (Nicki Hart). Shadow silhou- ettes behind white screens entrance us as they shower and ready themselves for Big Daddy's birth- day. Given the size and limitations of a theater like the Gilbert, it's always so special and invitational when brilliant f lairs of set design like this are executed. In this opening scene, Brick and Maggie are already arguing. Maggie wants sex. Brick wants silence – and his whisky. But this is merely the fa- çade of their marital problems. Brick is interrogated incessantly about his drinking problem. Big Mama (Rhonda Brocki) fusses. Maggie alter- nates between seducing and black- mailing him out of drinking. Mean- while, Big Daddy insists Brick stops "passing the buck." You gotta love the tenacity of family sometimes, right? James Dean (of modern times) as Big Daddy is transfixing. Trained at the Lee Strasberg Institute in Los Angeles, Dean's acting chops are light years above the mark. The green stage light- ing on him as he contemplates old memories and confronts impending death gives eerie homage to scenes from Alfred Hitchcock's "Vertigo." Overall, though, the production succeeds best at capturing how appearances are never what they seem to be. Brick and Maggie are a couple so clearly divided, there might as well be a 20-foot concrete wall, com- plete with batteries, trenches and moat between them. The instinct is to empathize for a spark plug like Maggie, settling for a husband who merely tol- erates her presence. One gets the same feeling for Big Mama, who is berated by the misogynistic and cruel Big Daddy. But there's sympathy to be had for Brick, too. He struggles with the confusion and homophobia that surrounds his friendship with the late Skipper. A claustrophobic time bomb of a tale, "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" articulates how difficult it is to communicate, even with family, about our most deeply personal fears and issues. The play could be summed up entirely when Maggie says, "Lean on me," and Brick replies, "I don't want to lean on you. I want my crutch." We can try to talk it out, but sometimes people aren't ready to dissect and understand and fit each missing piece with another corresponding piece. They'd rather be a cat on a hot tin roof: do what is easy and avoid the conversation altogether. Some of the other standout performances of the night are from side characters like Mae (Staci Gray- bill) and the Reverend (Larry Carlisle). They man- age to serve their characters while also alleviating enormous tension with understated hilarity. The Gilbert is closing out a season fraught with the caged hearts of those aching to be free. "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" is tense punctuation mark to that end. Shows will run until June 10. For tickets and information, visit gilberttheater.com. 'Cat on a Hot Tin Roof ' a sizzling close to Gilbert Theater's season by LAUREN VANDERVEEN LAUREN VANDERVEEN, Contributing Writer. COMMENTS? Editor@upandcom- ingweekly.com. 910-484-6200. DR. SHANESSA FENNER, Principal, WT Brown Elementary School. COMMENTS? Editor@ upandcomingweekly.com. 910-484-6200.

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