Gospel musical to hit the stage
by Rebecca Johnston
rjohnston@cherokeetribune.com
September 19, 2012 12:40 AM | 1784 views | 0 0 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print

Cast members bringing ‘Smoke on the Mountain’ to the Canton Theatre this weekend include, from left, Thelma ‘Bay’ Cagle as Vera Sanders, Katie Cagle as Denise Sanders, Jeff Bryant as Stanley Sanders, Eric Reinhardt as Dennis Sanders, Kenneth Kincaid as Burl Sanders and Tracy Gibson as June Sanders. <br>Cherokee Tribune/Special
Cast members bringing ‘Smoke on the Mountain’ to the Canton Theatre this weekend include, from left, Thelma ‘Bay’ Cagle as Vera Sanders, Katie Cagle as Denise Sanders, Jeff Bryant as Stanley Sanders, Eric Reinhardt as Dennis Sanders, Kenneth Kincaid as Burl Sanders and Tracy Gibson as June Sanders.
Cherokee Tribune/Special
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Jed Jenkins as Rev. Mervin Oglethorpe talks with Sandra Lewis as Myryle and Debby Helton as Maude.
Jed Jenkins as Rev. Mervin Oglethorpe talks with Sandra Lewis as Myryle and Debby Helton as Maude.
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CANTON — “Smoke on the Mountain,” the popular musical about a family of gospel singers, is going to raise the rafters this weekend at the Canton Theatre.

The North Georgia Acting Company based in Jasper is bringing the play, which tells the story of the Sanders Family Singers, to the local theater for performances Thursday through Sunday. Show times are 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday and 2 p.m. on Sunday.

This will be the third season the North Georgia Acting Company has presented “Smoke on the Mountain.” The group of actors, singers and musicians came together because of a love of theater and a desire to put on high quality performances, according to Artistic Director Ross Galbreath.

“We have a great team, all of us bring something to the table,” Galbreath said. “It takes all of us to bring a show to life.”

Galbreath said they have a solid team with great directors, singers, musicians and performers, several from Canton and graduates of Reinhardt University, as well as residents of Pickens County.

The North Georgia Acting Company has also presented “A Greater Tuna” and several event shows, including a Western review.

“A bunch of us are artistically driven and wanted to put on some really good shows, some quality shows,” Galbreath said. “There is kind of an even balance, it works out well with the group, and we also pull in new people.”

The actors actually play the instruments used in the production, Galbreath said.

“We try to put on a high quality show better than your average community theater,” he said.

“Smoke on the Mountain” tells the story of a family of gospel singers in economically depressed 1938. A little family feuding, along with keeping the faith in Mount Pleasant Baptist Church somewhere in the North Carolina Mountains, has made the play a perennial favorite.

In the play, young Rev. Oglethorpe has invited the Sanders Family Singers to provide an “upliftin’ evening of singin’ and witnessing” for his staid flock. What he and the church get is a surprising evening of wonderful and rousing music and more than two dozen songs, many of them vintage Gospel and bluegrass favorites, mixed in with hilarious stories from the more — or less — devout members of the Sanders Family.

Galbreath said they chose the show because of its theme as well as its popularity.

“It was thrown out from years ago, we thought it was a really neat show and would be good to do,” Galbreath added. “It is not just a show, it kind of touches on life in general, the Bible and the true meaning of life.”

Ticket prices are $20 and can be purchased at www.Tix.com or by calling the theater at (770) 704-0755.

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