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New season of ‘Suppertime’ underway

The curtain went up on the 14th season of Alabama’s Official Folklife Play, “Come Home, It’s Suppertime” at the We Piddle Around Theater in Brundidge, Tuesday night.

All performances of the fall productions are sold out with “supper guests” coming from as far away as Panama City, Mobile and Tuscaloosa in Alabama and points in South Georgia.

“When the played opened we had no idea that we would still be around seven years later,” said Johnny Steed, chair of the folklife play council. “We are very honored that people continue to enjoy it. We hope that everyone who comes wants to come back again and we do have many people that come back time after time. So, we try to change the play a little each time by adding a few new scenes, new lines and new cast members.”

But basically, “Come Home, It’s Suppertime” remains the same and the thought behind keeping it that way is that “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

The play is performed in the We Piddle Around Theater, a 1940 Works Progress Administration project on Main Street.

The original folklife play, which reflects the way people lived, worked and worshiped during the Great Depression era, received the 2008 Governor’s Tourism Award. The award was presented in August at the Governor’s Conference on Tourism in Birmingham.

“We were humbled by the award and very appreciative of it and the positive recognition that it brings to our community,” Steed said. “At every practice and every performance, I’m reminded of the great wealth of talent that we have here in Pike County.

“The cast is like family. We have people of all ages and from all walks of life and they are all dedicated and committed to the preservation of the cultural heritage of our community and the rural South.”

The stories told in “Come Home” are true stories as told by real-life characters in and around Brundidge. However, the characters are composite characters – a little of one and a bit of another — so they mix and blend to tell the story of the rural south during Hard Times.

Steed said a good bit of pidding and a lot of hard work have gone into the Brundidge Historical Society’s original folklife play.

“We hope those who ‘come home’ at suppertime, leave thinking all the piddling has been worthwhile,” he said.