Carey Dinner Theatre winds down season with second show


Carey Dinner Theatre’s second musical of the summer season is “Peace Like a River.” The gospel comedy runs July 9-20 at Tatum Theatre at William Carey University’s Hattiesburg campus.

The sequel to CDT’s 2011 hit, “Peace in the Valley,” the show continues the story of Harmony Valley Church and the confusion that reigns there.

“Peace Like a River” was written by Jim Hesselman and J.R. Stuart with music by Jon Kitchen. The story is based on a rural church in a small Indiana town and many of the scenes, such as a funny flashback sequence, are based on real events.

“It is our hope that this little church’s journey brings recognition, humor, and fun – with maybe just a little message of love and togetherness – to its audience,” Hesselman said.

The eight-person ensemble cast plays 16 roles in this heartwarming musical. Cast members are Bailey Broome of Gulfport, Alberto Duarte-Genelle of Water Valley, Delaney Dukes of Hattiesburg, Tessa Flecher of Mobile, Ala; Lee Fortner of Port Gibson, Ryan Kelly of Vicksburg, Nelson Meredith of Olive Branch and Gracyn Taylor of Long Beach.

Songs include “Peace Like a River,” “Battle Hymn of the Republic,” “Blessed Assurance,” “Rock-A-My-Soul,” “When the Roll is Called Up Yonder,” “Just a Closer Walk with Thee” and “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands.”

The director of the production is WCU alumnus Tim Matheny, a theatre faculty member at Mississippi State University. The scenery was designed by MSU faculty member Cody Stockstill, who has worked for Carey Dinner Theatre in the past. Costumes were designed by WCU alumna Kelly James-Penot, a faculty member at The University of Southern Mississippi. The technical director is WCU faculty member Dewey Douglas. The master carpenter is WCU theatre major Chace Giadrosich of Beaumont.

Dinner is served at 6:30 p.m. in the Joe & Virginia Tatum Theatre and the performance follows. The box office is open daily from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Tickets are $35 and include buffet, tax, and show.  To make reservations, call (601) 318-6221.