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On Saturday, June 28, at the Wilshire Ebell Theatre in Los Angeles, California, The Horton Theatre Group presented a thought-provoking, heart-wrenching, soul-stirring production entitled, “I’m Hurting and Who Can Heal Me?” How many times have I heard a woman of God tell me that she has a call on her life to heal hurting women? Such a high mandate, such a high call!
The production, was well-written and directed by Robin L. Horton with its executive producer Dr. Robbie Horton. It was written to explore the many facets women and men face today such as rejection, physical and mental abuse, low self-esteem and promiscuity due to infidelity.
It also addressed the emotional, physical and spiritual anguish that is an impending result of facing these types of life issues and challenges. Most notably it depicted the various roles women play to seek the acceptance, to attract love and sadly to simply just survive.
Transitioning from life issue to life issue, the production starred Vincent Ward as Terrance Dent who has appeared in “Oceans 11,” sitcoms such as “Girlfriends” and episodes of “CSI,” “The Bold and the Beautiful” and others just to name a few. Terrance, a man of many emotions battled with issues of spiritual integrity versus worldly acceptance as a natural doctor knowing the power of a living Jesus.
Malik Barnhardt known for his appearance in such films as “Get Rich or Die Tryin’” and “Woman Thou Art Loosed” appeared as Edward, who played the part of a young man who faced the challenges of having a desire to be a father in an unstable relationship where his choices were ultimately not his own.
Coco Short who made her starring-role debut as Tina, the fiery and outspoken woman trying to get her groove back--watch out Stella!--captivated the audience with her humor and soulful vocals that exploded from the stage like thunder. Though she wanted to get her groove back one should not jump to conclusions about the end of the story. However, you should go out and get her new contemporary gospel recording titled “New Beginnings” to get a sampling of her soulful vocals for yourself.
Stacey Ashley is the 2006 NAACP Winner for “Girls of Summer.” She has starred in both off-Broadway and Los Angeles runs of “Soldiers Don’t Cry,” in which she was the 2005 NAACP Best Lead Actress nominee and LAAREP Award nominee. Her performance captivated the audience with her powerful one woman performance depicting a mother who had painfully witnessed the loss her child. So heartfelt were her screams of agony and emotion it was as if her loss became your own.
Lauren Eberhardt is not new to the stage. She has appeared in such theatrical productions as “Life is a Highway,” “Young Hollywood,” “The Nutcracker” and “Sleeping Beauty.” She portrayed Maria, the broken woman who’s fairytale fantasies for the happily-ever-after were shattered by the reality that all that glitters is not gold. Her portrayal should make every women prayerfully seek the Lord for wisdom with the man she finds.
Lia Grant who has held leading roles in theatrical productions such as “Get Thee Behind Me!,” “Mama, I’m Sorry,” “Real Men Pray” and “Woman at the Well” showed that doing what Mama says to do to get a man may not always be the best course of action if you have to lose your identity to do it. Her character whose name was Promise showed the reality of how many women are groomed to do the right things and say the right things to get the man they want. But the question is, “What does it cost you in the end?”
This play is a must see and also featured outstanding performances and supporting roles by Alexander Slesers as Emmanuel Hart, Eunice Viggers as Luppa, Derek Shaun as John, Mylika Davis as Louise, Christopher Dean, Jr. as Bill Guy, Tisha French as Constance, Dwight Hicks as James, April Russell as Rosa and, NaOkna McKinley as the Unexpected Wife.
It is my hope that this production will come back to Los Angeles again soon. The issues uncovered in this production minister not only to spiritual needs of our people, but to the societal needs of our generation. For more information about sponsorship opportunities, please contact The Horton Theatre Group at (213) 804-9283 or via email at