Perry Players’ ‘Catfish Moon’ all about relationships

Sun News correspondentMay 1, 2013 

  • If you go

    What: “Catfish Moon”
    When: 7:30 p.m. Friday, Saturday; 2:30 p.m. Sunday; 7:30 p.m. May 8-11; 2:30 p.m. May 12
    Where: Perry Players Community Theatre, 909 Main St., Perry
    Cost: $15 (discounts available for seniors, military, children and matinees)
    More information: Call 987-5354.
    Note: The show has mild adult language and is suited for a PG-13 audience.

In the Perry Players’ upcoming production of “Catfish Moon,” Kellie Jenkins portrays a woman who is a sister, a girlfriend and an ex-wife trying to hold all the men in her life together.

But the play, which opens Friday, is not as much about her or the men in her life as it is about the relationships between the four, Jenkins said.

“It is the relationships that are important to the plot, especially the relationships between the men,” said Jenkins. “I am sort of the glue that holds them all together.”

Jenkins, who got involved in community theater last year, said she was drawn to acting after sitting in the audience of Perry Players Community Theatre. Having three very different aspects to her role wasn’t challenging, she said, but having a starring role was.

“This is the largest part I have done since I got involved. It has been a lot of work,” she said. “I am on stage a lot of the time, so it has really stretched my acting.”

The show, which Jenkins described as “funny and sad” has a lot of things in it that people will relate to in their own lives.

“It is about missed opportunities and regrets, but it is also about overcoming those as well. It is also about lifelong friends and maintaining those friendships,” said Jenkins. “It is a must see. The writing is just great, and my cast members are phenomenal.”

Rounding out the small cast is Don Boyd, who is directing the production, Jim Strickland and Todd Wilson.

While directing and acting in a play might seem daunting, Boyd has an advantage. He is reprising the role that he did in 1998 for a community theater in Florida, a production that won best play at the Southeastern Theatre Conference. It was at the conference that Boyd met and developed a friendship with “Catfish Moon” writer Laddy Sartin.

“Catfish Moon” “was a phenomenon because it has never run on Broadway,” said Boyd. “Now that happens all the time, where a play is grown in the community theater arena. But it was one of the first.”

Boyd described Sartin as a “down to earth Southern boy.”

“If you met him, you wouldn’t think he was a playwright, but he has written one of the gems.”

Boyd said the three men in the play are connected by their relationships but also by a fishing pier.

“It is the place where they went swimming and played hooky as children and as adults have the chance to purchase the property. They also have the chance to relive their youth.”

The play is set in the South and is described by Boyd as a “Southern comedy in the best sense of the word.” The characters, according to Boyd, are complex and dynamic.

“The processes they go through emotionally and intellectually are very real and are portrayed very real,” said Boyd.

In addition to this month’s production, “Catfish Moon” also will go on the road for two evenings of dinner theater at the Austin Theatre in Fort Valley on June 21-22. Tickets for the dinner theater are $20 and may be purchased through the Fort Valley Arts Alliance at 951-4828.

Contact Alline Kent at 396-2467 or allinekent@cox.net.

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