‘Court’ is in session at Oppry Theater

Published 11:59 pm Wednesday, January 28, 2009

The Oppry Theater will hold its first live production this weekend as it presents David Landau’s Contempt of Court. The performances are Friday and Saturday at 6:30 p.m. at the Opp Middle School multi-purpose room.

“It’s about three civil cases that are going to be presented to the audience, who will then act as the jury,” said Bart Boothe, a cast member and member of the theater board. “There’s a lot of audience interaction. The actors will come off stage and walk through the crowd, making their cases for the ‘clients’ they represent.

“Then, at the end of each act, the audience will vote on who they believe is liable or not.”

Boothe said the show is packed with comedy and will have the opportunity for some audience members to go onstage to join the cast. Following the first act, the audience will enjoy a dinner of fried chicken, collard greens and sweet potatoes.”

Unfortunately, Boothe said both performances are already sold out.

“This show is really to try and raise money so we can put on other shows down the road,” Boothe said. “We’ve gotten some great sponsorships and we’ve sold out all our tickets so far, so we’re even ahead of where we wanted to be.”

Boothe said the cast is made up entirely of Opp citizens, except for veteran community theater performer Roger LeCompte, who is from Andalusia. The complete cast for Contempt of Court is LeCompte, Boothe, Carol Long, Faye Tisdale, Christy Thompson, Eileen Snapp, Jamey Wismer, Wesley Thompson, Toby Blair, Jimmy Loggins and Robyn Risnour.

“We’ve got six lawyers and a judge, and some other characters — it’s a big cast,” Boothe said. “Each of the cases has a funny story. One of the cases is over a will, another is over a medical procedure gone wrong and the third is where a bunch of actors who aren’t very good at acting sue a talent agency because that agency couldn’t make them famous.

“It’s a fun, slapstick comedy and there’s one funny line after the other.”

James Kelsoe, executive director emeritus of the Opp & Covington County Chamber of Commerce, said the theater is a great thing for the city.

“The Chamber of Commerce is excited and pleased that the community theater is offering this opportunity for Opp,” he said.

Boothe said he is unsure what the theater may present in the future, but said there are tentative plans to have a musical somewhere in the future.

“Me and the rest of the board are pleased to present this performance and are glad we can offer something for the citizens of Opp,” he said. “We hope that it’s something the citizens can enjoy and that it will be a long-lasting opportunity for us.”

Oppry Theater board members are Doris Wismer, Eugenia Loggins, Jay Mikel and Boothe.