Shrimp and grits. Cheese grits. Grits and gravy. Instant grits (which are, I understand, an abomination.) No less than the Charleston Post and Courier has declared grits “an inexpensive, simple, and thoroughly digestible food [that] should be made popular throughout the world. Given enough of it, the inhabitants of planet Earth would have nothing to fight about. A man full of [grits] is a man of peace.” However you cook them and serve them up, grits are a staple of Southern life.
GRITS is also an acronym for one of creation’s finest accomplishments: Girls Raised in The South, the subject of the upcoming production at the Sumter Opera House, “GRITS: The Musical.”
According to the production website:
It’s four women, four generations and four different views.
It’s your mother, your sister, your Grandma, your best friend.
It’s sweet tea, collard greens, fresh tomatoes and banana puddin’.
It’s stories you’ll recognize and tales from the past.
It’s country music, jazz tunes, old time blues and toe tappin’ rock.
It’s the old, the new and some things in between.
It’s about love and laughter, revelation and grace.
Its “GRITS: The Musical.”
I won’t even attempt to fit the plot into this post, but the producer can explain it better, anyway—click here! Whether you’re a Southerner and proud of it, or you’re a transplant who happens to find us quaint, or you’re just trying to figure out why the heck we do things the way we do down here, let this evening of professional song and dance enlighten and entertain you!
Based on the novel Friends are Forevah by Barbara Ford, this excellent stage adaptation (a review can be found online here) is coming to the Opera House on March 30 at 7:30 p.m. (doors open at 7) and a matinee performance at 2:30 p.m. (doors open at 2) on March 31, 2012. General admission tickets are available NOW at the Swan Lake Visitors Center, 822 West Liberty Street for $20 advance, $15 for groups of 10 or more. For more information, please call (803) 436-2640 or (toll-free) 1-800-688-4748.
After seeing this show, if you don’t have a front porch, you’ll probably want one. And even if you’ve resisted sweet tea for however many years you’ve lived down South, you’ll want some. As for grits: the food, I can’t stand them, myself (bless my heart). Born in NC and raised mostly in SC, I’m an anomaly amongst Southerners. But when it comes to an evening of vignettes in song and dance, dedicated to this land I love, who on earth could resist?
Please Note: The Sumter Opera House Parking Lot is being paved during the weekend of GRITS. Plenty of parking will be available in parking lots located at First Baptist Church, Hampton’s, Harvin St., and the Liberty Center and on Main Street. Those who require handicapped access can be dropped off at the front door of the Sumter Opera House. If you have any questions or concerns, please call the Downtown Development Office at (803) 436-2635.