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CHURCH AND STATE School 77/Ujima Theatre
By
Sep 22, 2022, 22:36
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Shea.s Performing Arts Center

Through October 2
CHURCH AND STATE School 77/Ujima Theatre

There is an entire stream of humor about politicians lying or at least not telling the truth.
Itís easy because so many figure they will get into less trouble by not telling the truth.
Iíve heard enough do it.
You know, when the pol shows up with that big check and makes it sound as if itís his or her money.
Not really.
North Carolina Senator Charles Whitmore (John Kreuzer) gets in trouble by telling the truth and social media torches him, in Jason Odell William ďChurch and State.Ē
Heís from a small town around Raleigh where 29 students were killed in the local school by a teen, a school attended by his son and his sonís best friend who died in the massacre.
Asked by a blogger, the senator admits an inability to pray in this situation.
This is North Carolina where prayer and Bible reading are central to the life of most, shown by Whitmoreís campaign poster which trumpets ďJesus is my Running Mate.Ē
He canít even tell his wife, at least initially, what he said.
When he does, wife Sara (Rachel Jamison) and campaign manager Alex Klein (Sabrina Kahwaty) approach panic.
Itís just three days before the election.
There wonít be any spoilers here but there is a shock ending and an interesting structure where Williams goes back late in the play and lets the senator give the speech he gave after social media reported his comments on prayer.
Recent elections in North Carolina show the stateís poisonous politics and thatís showing again this year.
Sara Whitmore is a little suspicious of Klein, a Jewish Democrat from New York City.
Klein has a successful track record as a campaign manager and sheís worried that Whitmore could damage her score card because he went off book talking to the blogger.
This is a very short play and director Ross Hewitt makes it move along on Dylan Reganís set which is mostly the green room, the candidateís dressing room at North Carolina State, where the senator, Sara and Alex rush in and out and Vincent DeStefano keeps arriving in a little different costume as yet another character.
"Church and State" is certainly about a fictional election in North Carolina, but in this election year and in these times, itís about more than one Confederate state.
Itís worth seeing.

A.W.

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