Whenever you hear the terms Gospel Play or Christian Theater, it normally has an existing reputation. We've come to expect that the play is going to consist of gospel music selections and bombastic, extravagant characters. People usually expect Tyler Perry, or some series similar to Woman Thou Art Loosed when they plan to go to a Gospel Play.
And quite naturally is this consensus the result of numerous BET Specials and Tyler Perrys vigorous marketing machine. We've grown to expect a particular brand of theater when we think of Christian Theatre. What if we grew to expect the sets and directorial innovations to contain similar elements to that of a Broadway production?
Dr. Phyllis Tucker-Wicks has gone well over a decade providing texts that can give leeway to Production managers and Technicians to create new environments for the Gospel play.
By introducing Spiritual Warfare into the context of very human experiences, staging can take on more of metaphoric standpoint than the customary staging of houses and apartments. Tucker-Wicks' plays follow the lives of angels and demons entrenched in their ongoing battle of Good versus Bad.
What set her plays apart are that her tales aren't just about families torn apart from addiction, infidelity or mere lapses in generational divides. She personifies spirits that have back-stories and motives to plot for the rescue/capture of human lives for God or Satan's use.
Her conclusions are never loose ends tied together by All-Wise grandmothers whose prayers save the day. She gives specific motifs and explanations to the issues we face in the human realm and give these All Wise, mythical Grandparents (or other humans) powers to see the inner-workings of the spiritual realm.
Looking forward into the future of her productions, these scripts give fertile ground for theatre practitioners and technicians to excavate new set pieces, new directorial innovations to build a new vision for the House of the Lord (and quite literally).
Dr. Tucker Wicks reimagines the image of Heaven and Hell from the context of the grounds for spiritual warfare. They are placed as headquarters for the rivaling spirits and set the tone for the focuses for the subject matter of the play.
In her new play, To Hell With All Your Lies, the demon Liar uses Virtual Reality to influence the minds of humans in his Hell-O-Gram room, set pieces like these should be carved out intimately with lighting and stage coloring.
With the plentiful canon of Blesd Productions, we can begin to envision a new realm for Gospel Theatre to educate and entertain the community on the limitless bounds of what that could truly mean.