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The Red Velvet Cake War opens Sept. 17 at Historic Pelzer Auditorium

Cast two years ago, but sidelined by the pandemic, The Red Velvet Cake War presented by Mill Town Players opens this Friday at Historic Pelzer Auditorium.

Billed as a ‘delicious Southern-fried comedy,’ the play written by Jessie Jones, Nicholas Hope and Jamie Wooten follows three cousins in Texas and their attempt to stage a family reunion. Things spin hilariously out of control when a neighbor’s pet devours everything edible, a one-eyed suitor shows up to declare his love, and a high-stakes wager is made on who can bake the best red velvet cake.

“I’m very proud of this show and we’ve had the best time working on it,” said Mill Town Players Executive Artistic Director Will Ragland. “It’s just hilarious – full of one-liners, cheap jokes, physical comedy, breakaway props.”

The Red Velvet Cake War features an Upstate ensemble that includes veteran actors and at least one first timer.

“Annette Larsen is playing Mama Doll Hargis and this is her first play ever,” said Ragland, who is directing the show. “She lives right behind the auditorium and walks to rehearsals.”

Other cast members are: Libby Riggins as Gaynelle Verdeen Bodeen; Cindy Mixon as Peaches Verdeen Belrose; Shannon Faulkner as Jimmie Wyvette Verdeen; Dona Shiflette as Cee Cee Windham; Janie Dillard as Aunt LaMerle; Annette Larsen as Mama Doll Hargis; Shane Willimon as Purvis Verdeen; Ed Chambers as Sheriff Grover Lout; Jesse Winner as Newt Blaylock; and Rod McClendon as Aubrey Verdeen.

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The show runs for three weekends from Sept. 17 through Oct. 3. Showtimes are Thursday and Friday at 7:30 p.m., with two performances on Saturday at 3 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $12 for adults and $10 for seniors, military personnel and students. Masks are encouraged.

The Red Velvet Cake War comes on the heels of a successful run of Steel Magnolias at Historic Pelzer Auditorium that drew more than 5,000 attendees, Ragland said. “It was the most attended non-musical show we’ve ever done,” he said.

Want to attend?

What: The Red Velvet Cake War presented by Mill Town Players

When: Sept 17 – Oct. 3; Performances on Thursdays and Fridays at 7:30 p.m.; Saturday at 3 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

Where: Historic Pelzer Auditorium, 214 Lebby Street, Pelzer SC 29669

Purchase tickets online at milltownplayers.org or call (864) 947-8000.

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