Directors' Choice Award Winner
book and lyrics Jack Hilton Cunnngham, music & lyrics Danny Ashkenasi
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Feedstore Quartet takes you to a fictional Mississippi town on a sultry summer Saturday in the mid-1950s. There racial and sexual prejudices abound. In front of the town’s busy feed and seed store three old white men sit in rocking chairs “shootin’ the breeze.” Nearby is Joe, an elderly, blind African-American, playing his accordion for passersby. As pleasantries and barbs fly between the men, several townspeople pass, unseen by the audience, triggering conversations about the civil war, the present, the church, and, of course, bigotry. This is the old-South after all. While the old men chat, their former selves appear in memory as boys and young men, revealing long hidden secrets.
A trio of love affairs surfaces: Rufus and his shot-gun wedding to the love of his life Lula Mae, Charlie and his beloved Sara whom he met while calling at a barn dance in Alabama, and the hidden love between a youthful Eugene and Joe. The past and present intermingle as memories are played out and duets are sung between the younger and older versions of the same character.
Finally the full extent of Eugene and Joe’s youthful relationship, its sweet beginning and bitter end, is revealed to the audience, if not to the other unsuspecting men sitting on the feed and seed store porch. In the present, Eugene and Joe are left in silent, sad regret.
As the day comes to a close, the old men drift home. The audience is left with an anthem of love lost and love embraced sung by all characters, past and present.
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