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Acclaimed Play ‘Skeleton Crew’ Makes Its Magic City Debut

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At the start of the Great Recession, one of the last auto-stamping plants in Detroit is on shaky ground. Each of the workers must make choices on how to move forward if their plant goes under. (PROVIDED PHOTO)
Special to The Birmingham Times

Encore Theatre and Gallery continues its third season with Magic City premiere of Dominique Morisseau’s “Skeleton Crew,” which is the third installment in Morisseau’s three-play cycle, “The Detroit Project” (alongside “Paradise Blue” and “Detroit ’67”), a trilogy reminiscent of August Wilson’s “Century Cycle, with all three parts set in Morisseau’s hometown of Detroit, Michigan.

The play will be held at Encore Theatre and Gallery, 213 Gadsden Hwy Suite 108, Birmingham, AL 35235 on Nov. 5 to 7.

“Skeleton Crew” is the third installment of Dominique Morisseau’s “The Detroit Project” trilogy, which also includes “Paradise Blue” and “Detroit ’67.”

At the start of the Great Recession, one of the last auto-stamping plants in Detroit is on shaky ground. Each of the workers must make choices on how to move forward if their plant goes under. Shanita must decide how she’ll support herself and her unborn child, Faye must decide how and where she’ll live, and Dez must figure out how to make his ambitious dreams a reality. Power dynamics shift as their manager Reggie is torn between doing right by his work family and by the red tape in his office. 

At the helm of the production is Houston, Texas-based director Charnele Brown, who is best known for her portrayal of Kim Reese, the pre-med student on the hit NBC sitcom “A Different World.”

 She was also one of the first Americans in the hit Broadway musical “Sarafina!” which was nominated for a Tony Award. Brown’s film credits include film director Spike Lee’s “Drop Squad,” as well as “The Kangeroo” and “Tendrils,” which won nine indie awards. She also has appeared on several other hit sitcoms, such as “Girlfriends,” “My Wife and Kids,” “Living Single,” “Oliver Beene,” and “Martin.”

The “Skeleton Crew” cast includes Schelle Purcell as Faye, Marc Raby as Reggie, Shalisha Sheridan as Shanita, and Jeremy Jefferson as Dez. This performance brims with rhythm and poetry, providing fresh meaning to what we know about the Motor City and humanity.

For more information visit Encore Theatre and Gallery Tickets (ticketleap.com) or call 205-202-4008.