“Steel Magnolias” hits the stage at the Tupelo community theater

TUPELO, Miss. (WCBI)- A well known movie comes to the stage in Tupelo.

The stage production of “Steel Magnolias” follows the story line of the well known movie, with a few changes.

“There are no men in the stage production, so those male characters are all off stage and the entire play takes place in the salon, Truvy’s salon,” said Jonathan Martin.

Martin is director for TCT’s production of “Steel Magnolias.” He oversees a cast and crew of more than twenty and says there was a lot of interest in this play.

“Out of all the shows I’ve directed, this was the highest attended casting we had, over seventy people auditioned for these six roles. It was a difficult set of choices, we think we got very lucky with the people in the cast, they’re hysterical and hit just the right emotional notes as well, it’s a really wonderful play,” said Martin.

Becky Shaffer plays Truvy Jones, the owner of Truvy’s Salon, where the play takes place.

The story follows the lives of six southern women, who share life’s valleys and mountaintops and who also know how to cut up and have a great time.

“This is sort of the ultimate female story, friendship, overcoming hard times, doing it with friends, I’ve watched it for about twenty years I would say, so getting to be part of it is really thrilling , and this cast is beautiful and we’ve formed a bond, kind of like you do in the beauty shop,” said Shaffer.

Maddie Ludt plays Shelby Eatenton, soon to be Latcherie.

She says there are many challenges portraying such well known characters in an iconic movie, especially when it comes to the part of Shelby, who suffers from diabetes.

“Obviously, it’s a challenge to live up to everyone’s expectations for the characters since they’re played by such beloved actresses in the movie. But there are some zingers, if you’ve seen the movie, you will recognize some lines, so that will be enjoyable to audiences , it’s also a challenge to portray somebody who has an illness but who is so very independent,” said Ludt.

Steel Magnolias runs through Saturday at the Lyric Theater.

The next production for Tupelo Community Theater will be “Shrek Junior.”

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