The Ensemble: “Freeda Peoples”

Callina Situka, Joyce Anastasia Murray, Delali Potakey, Shane Warren Jones, Jason Carmichael, Byron Jacquet and Roc Living
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By T.J. Baker

HOUSTON – I’m embarrassed to say, that it’s been a few years since I’ve been to an Ensemble theater play.  I’ve had plenty of opportunities to go, but didn’t.  Well, when you run out of good lazy excuses, the only thing to do is to get your booty up and just go. I’m glad that I did, especially seeing this performance “Freeda Peoples.” Since there wasn’t a brief synopsis in the program booklet, that meant you had to pay attention or you’ll be trying to catch up on what’s going on in the middle of the play.  I’m not going to be a spoiler, but I didn’t see it coming, the extra homophobia issues within the church.   It’s okay to accept homosexuality, but sometimes we can’t handle it when the pressure is too close to home, or should I say, too close to certain church members, who think homosexuality has no place and no rights in the church… unless it’s the music choir director or the organ/pianist player.

“Freeda Peoples” also had other grave issues going on within this particular church. I’m telling you it definitely will keep you hopping and twisting in your seat, because when you think you have solved the mystery, the storyline turns into a completely new direction, leaving you at awe over and over.   “Freeda Peoples” was written by Joyce Sylvester and directed by Eileen J. Morris. Both ladies have very impressive theatrical portfolios.

I’d like to add that every character pulled it off and kept the suspicion going one after another.  However, I want to give a special shout out to {Deacon Beasley} played by Byron Jacquet, who I love to see in action since I was a young adult at TSU.   Every cynical character Byron plays is orchestrated and comes with a message in every scenario he gives. Yet it comes with lots of surprises and keeps the play flowing from the beginning to the end.

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Photo Credit:  David Bray

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