Minster to organize theater as community outreach

By Galen Holley
Daily Journal
TUPELO – A community organizer is pulling together a theater troupe for the purpose of helping those with troubled lives.
The Rev. James Hull is organizing the Agape Community Theatre and he says the purpose isn’t just entertainment but social outreach.
“There are people out there lost in troubled, disobedient lives and entertainment is an effective vehicle for reaching them,” said Hull, a Baptist minister.
Hull, who taught theater at Holmes Community College, has appeared in numerous plays dealing with black identity and culture, such as Judi Ann Mason’s “Livin’ Fat” and Lorraine Hansberry’s “A Raisin in the Sun.” He said that’s the kind of material Agape will present.
The theater’s first production, auditions for which begin next week, is one of Hull’s original screenplays, a three-act piece titled “Heartstrings,” which follows the story of a young, black man struggling with self-identity.
Hull said the play’s themes speak directly to the problems facing the black community, including AIDS and the sometimes awkward dynamic between a father and son.
“This isn’t just a black experience, it’s human experience,” said Hull.
He added, “This will be a ministry, and part of the ministry will be the discussions that emerge from dealing with characters’ motivations and how to present the material.”
Hull said he’s looking for actors and production people with all levels of experience and he’s creating a convenient, local touring schedule that will allow working folks to participate.
“We have so much talent in our communities,” said Hull. “Plays are great, cathartic tools that can do a great deal of good.”
Contact Daily Journal religion editor Galen Holley at 678-1510 or galen.holley@djournal.com.

Galen Holley

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