‘Bama Drama: “Mockingbird” Re-Opens

The New York Times reports: ‘The play unfolded here Friday at the Old Monroe County Courthouse pretty much as it has for the past 27 years. Atticus Finch defended Tom Robinson. The gospel choir sang. Scout used a slingshot to keep the boys in line and her curiosity to pose tough questions. But much about this stage production of “To Kill a Mockingbird” and life in this small town, where it has long been an economic and civic anchor, is a bit different this year.

‘Harper Lee, the author who first gave life to the story and became this town’s most famous resident, died in February. The play, which is an adaptation of her novel, is being produced this spring for the first time by a nonprofit she created, not the local museum that had relied on it for revenue.

‘A few actors from the all-volunteer cast have quit, in part, they say, because the Monroe County Heritage Museum is no longer the chief beneficiary of the production.

‘“I don’t have drama in my personal life,” said one actor, Alan Smith, who took part in the production for three years, “and I don’t want it in my relationship with the community.”’


[photo credit: Jeff Haller for The New York Times]

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