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Photos by Suzannah Solomon Wilson

Tecumseh play to return in November

By Michael Butler

The first Tecumseh play in Tallassee in 2011 commemorated the 200th anniversary of the Native American Shawnee warrior's visit to Tallassee. The production became an annual event by the Friends of Tuckabatchee through 2014. This November, it returns.

Among the changes with this year's production include a name change, "...And One Fire Still Burns," and the venue - the Mount Vernon Theatre.

Friends of Tuckabatchee partnered with the theater for its first show after its grand opening in 2018. "Dear Mama: Letters and Music from World War II" was a major success.

Friends of Tuckabatchee president Liz Britt is optimistic that the revised Tecumseh play will also be a hit.

"The Alabama legislature established the Bicentennial Commission. We are one of the authorized events," she said "We've made numerous edits and revisions including the addition of our first governor.

"We have a Native American dancer from Knoxville, Tenn. Brooke Rigsby's girls from Studio B will be participating. We've changed the family scenes. Willie Moseley is the Scotch trader."

Hubert Boatwright is a former Tecumseh. That role is being portrayed by his son Kyle.

"Kyle came with Hubert in 2011 and learned every line. He was a little young fellow then," Britt added. "When we had tryouts, he was over the top. He does a fantastic job. We had practice last night. I'd say he knows 98 percent of his lines. We're really tickled to have Kyle. He's meeting this week with Ann Christian to work on his makeup. He's got to look like he's in his 30s, not 18."

There are 25 parts in the play. Some were cast in past performances.

"Having the opportunity to present this at the Mount Vernon Theatre is just wonderful. While (being) outside at the log cabin was magical, how fortunate we are to have this wonderful theater because it is much less fraying on one's nerves."

The play's title signifies the sacred fire by the Muscogee/Creek people. Coals were carried from their Alabama homes along the "Trail of Tears." The belief is that the fire must continue in order for the culture to survive.

"...And One Fire Still Burns" will have two shows for the public on Saturday, Nov. 2 at 7 p.m. and Sunday, Nov. 3 at 2 p.m. There will also be a school day on Nov. 1. For ticket information go to: www.mtvernontheatre.net.