Ragged Edge is now home to 'Guys and Dolls'


HARRODSBURG - Some members of the audience may be coming to see Ragged Edge Community Theater's production of "Guys and Dolls" for the songs, but they can expect a love story with plenty of laughs to boot.

The main characters include: Sky, a high roller; his love interest, Sarah, the upright but uptight mission doll out to reform the evil-doers of Times Square; Adelaide, the nightclub performer who is ill over being engaged to the same man for 14 years; and Nathan, her fiancee who always is on the lookout for a place to hold his floating crap game.

Set in the early 1950s, the play, directed by Jennifer Brummett, travels from New York City to the cafes of Havana, Cuba.

Play-goers can expect to see Deborah Drury, who portrays Adelaide, unleash her funny side.

"I feel like I've got this Lucille Ball that's been dying to get out of me for years and this is my first opportunity to let it out."


She's had to adapt to an alto range - with a New York accent

Drury says playing Adelaide is a dream role, but it also presents its challenges, especially in the singing department. Drury is used to singing a high soprano and she's had to adapt to an alto range - with a New York accent.

"I'm used to singing more pretty. Adelaide is singing in this New York accent, which is a harder sound."

One of the best things about being in this play is dressing for the role, Drury says.

"The clothing of that era is just fabulous and I love fashion so I've been having a good time," she says, noting that one of the cast members, Darrell Maines (Nicely), volunteered to make the costumes they wear while singing "Bushel and A Peck."

This is a song Adelaide performs with the Hot Box Chicks. She also does "Take Back Your Mink" with them, which she says is a lively number.

"We lose a little bit of our costumes during that number, too. A few pieces here and there."

In the end, the play is all about love, Drury says.

"It's about people finding people, people being together that you might not put together. ... Maybe an opposites attract sort of thing."

Love is the main message

Fred Smith, who plays Adelaide's boyfriend, Nathan, says love is the main message of the play.

"The main theme is love wins out."

In Nathan's case, it's a frustrating battle.

"He's been associated with Adelaide for the past 14 years. He's saying they've been engaged for 14 years, but he hasn't committed yet," Smith says.

Despite his hangup concerning commitment, Smith loves his character, who he says runs the oldest established permanent floating crap game in New York.

"It is an endearing quality, for some reason or another."

Bill Nichols, who portrays Sky, says the tough part about his role is playing the serious lover whereas Nathan and Adelaide use their love affair to get the laughs.

"I think, sometimes, the serious side of it is harder to convince the audience. It's a little easier to pull off the comic love interest," he says.

He bets he can get a girl anytime

Nichols' character ends up making a bet with a friend, boasting that he can get a girl anytime.

"He says, 'I can get one. You name her.'"

The friend suggests Sarah, and although Sky courts her as part of the bet, he winds up falling in love.

"Through the course of the play, Sky sees this spit-fire lady, who is unlike any lady he has known."

As Sky's girlfriend, Sarah, Lorrie Sims agrees that playing the role of a serious love interest is difficult.

"We're trying to find that chemistry and portray that. It's hard for me to act like I'm in love with somebody I'm not."

The play is definitely a comedy

Despite the serious nature of their love, Sims says the play definitely is a comedy.

"There's just so many funny things in there. I think it's about people finding themselves, who they are and what they want."

She especially likes the part of the play where Sky convinces Sarah to go to Cuba. "It's fun because when we go to Havana, I totally get to let my hair down."

While Sarah has been letting her hair down, things have gotten out of hand at the mission.

"It turns out that there was a crap game at the mission while they were gone," Nichols says. "She thinks Sky is involved. He goes to a crap game and says, 'I'll bet you $1,000 or your soul.'"

Nichols says this is his cue to sing "Luck Be A Lady," a song that Frank Sinatra made popular.

Although it requires a lot of effort on his part, Nichols says he enjoys seeing the soft side of his character. He also likes Sky's confidence.

"I like the footloose, high-rolling style. He seems pretty sure of himself. He has a lot of confidence in himself and he's got the money to back that up."

Her character has presented problems

Sims says her character has presented problems for her because of Sarah's innocence.

"It's been hard for me to take on a role of someone who is totally different from me."

Sims says her character finally has her eyes opened.

"Toward the end, she finally realizes what's going on. When she realizes that they had a crap game in her mission, she realizes not everybody is good, that there are a lot of sinners out there."

Singing also has been challenging because Sims is an alto doing soprano parts.

"Training my voice to get to the high notes is hard," she says.

Smith agrees that singing is the most challenging part for him.

"I have to sing in higher ranges and that just blows me away. I have a low voice and I have to sing high."

If you want to go

Guys and Dolls runs at 8 p.m. May 14-15, May 21-22 and 3 p.m. May 16 and May 23 at Ragged Edge Community Theater, 111 Main St., Harrodsburg. Cost: $10, adults; $9, senior citizens; and $7, children. Tickets: (859) 734-2389.

Central Kentucky News Articles