Blues Music’s Spell Hits a Resonant Note in New Stage Play

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Blues Music’s Spell Hits a Resonant Note in New Stage Play
(JACKSON, MS) – A main-stage play, I Just Stopped By to See the Man, at New Stage Theatre (1100 Carlisle St.) in Jackson, Mississippi, hits all the blues-music bullet points—the magical spell of its sound, its Mississippi Delta and field-worker roots, its musical flip side in spiritual communities, the crossroads myth, its “devil’s music” moniker and how British rockers rode its inspiration to riches. The play runs through Feb 13. Showtimes are 7:30pm Tuesdays through Saturdays and 2pm on Sundays. General admission is $30, with discounts available for students, seniors, military and groups. Attendees can find specific details and tickets at the theater box office, by phone at 601-948-3531 or online.

British playwright Stephen Jeffreys completed, I Just Stopped By to See the Man in 2000, and the play focuses on the humanity of those in its orbit. Salvation and sacrifice, redemption, reconciliation and temptation are threads in this character study of three people who must come to terms with their choices, their fears and the truth in their souls.

Set in the 1970s Mississippi Delta, Jesse “The Man” Davidson, last of the Delta bluesmen, lives in a shotgun house on a rural crossroads. Legends’ credit a devil’s deal behind his skill; the musician himself is reported to have died 14 years prior to the play’s start.

Proof of vaccination required (including children) for 6 of the performances. There will also be 1 socially distanced performance, and 1 pay-what-you can performance. Artworks from H.C. Porter’s “Blues at Home: Mississippi’s Living Blues Legends” series will be on exhibit, and Porter will be on hand to share insights on the project at 6:45pm on Feb 10, prior to that evening’s performance.

Adapted from Sherry Lucas/Mississippi Free Press – Photo by Kyle Tillman


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