Chattanooga Now Gem Players open 25th season with 'Sugar Bean Sisters'

Chattanooga Now Gem Players open 25th season with 'Sugar Bean Sisters'

September 14th, 2017 by Staff Report in Chattanooga Now - Art

If you go

› What: “The Sugar Bean Sisters”

› Where: Gem Theater, 700 Tennessee Ave., Etowah, Tenn.

› When: 7:30 p.m. Sept. 15-16, 21-23, 28-30; 2:30 p.m. Sept. 17 and 24 and Oct. 1

› Admission: $12 adults, $8 children ages 10-12

› For more information: 423-263-3270

In front, from left, are Elaine Baker, Deborah Richards and Jamie Cline; in back are Tim Womac and Dee Baker.

In front, from left, are Elaine Baker, Deborah...

Photo by Contributed Photo /Times Free Press.

Look what the eclipse left in Etowah — "The Sugar Bean Sisters," a Southern Gothic comedy of romance, murder and alien abduction.

The Gem Players are opening their 25th season with Nathan Sanders's hilarious comedy, "The Sugar Bean Sisters," on Friday, Sept. 15, at the historic Gem Theater in Etowah, Tenn. Eleven performances are scheduled through Oct. 1.

The audience will meet Faye and Willie Mae Nettle as they return home to their ramshackle swamp dwelling in Sugar Bean, Fla. They've spent a disastrous day at Walt Disney World, where Willie lost her prized Eva Gabor wig on Space Mountain. Faye, after witnessing the landing of an alien space craft some 25 years ago in her daddy's sugar cane field, is preparing for the return of celestial visitors on this night.

The Nettle sisters are determined to escape spinsterhood and the swamp. Willie Mae wants to go to Salt Lake City, Utah, and find a good Mormon husband; Faye plans to hop on the spaceship when the space people return for another visit.

However, a disturbance in the cane field lures the sisters outside to investigate. Faye recalls how their infamous daddy claimed to have witnessed dead folk walking through Sugar Bean on a similar night many years before. A strange bird-like woman suddenly appears out of the darkness of Buster Swamp, setting in motion a chain of extraordinary events.

Gem veteran Elaine Baker plays Willie Mae Nettles. Faye Clementine Nettles is brought to life by another veteran Gem Player, Jamie Cline.

Vidallia Sparks (the Bird Lady) is played by newcomer Deborah Richards. Newcomer Tim Womac is Bishop Crumley, the Mormon Bishop from Salt Lake City, and Gem veteran Denise Baker plays the Reptile Woman.

The "Sugar Bean Sisters" is a mixture of folk legend, tall tale and swamp fantasy. It's an unforgettable show to celebrate the theatrical troupe's 25th anniversary landmark.

For more information: 423-263-3270.