| ''Hidden Wounds'' Uncovered At BC
Lies, betrayal and violence tear at the fabric of a family in the student written and directed gospel stage show “Hidden Wounds.” The production debuted on May 3 and ran through May 5 at Berea Baptist Church in Berea, Ky.
Hidden Wounds: A Story of Healing
Written and directed by students Lamont Hill and CeDarian Crawford, the play was inspired by the real life story of a Berea student Earnest Sloan. The play’s plot revolves around the character Tony Kingston, a 20-something man played by sophomore Christian Motley, and his struggle to come to terms with the pain of an abusive past while learning to forgive with God's help. Through his struggles, Kingston acknowledges what is happening inside his heart, admits that he is hurting and asks for God’s guidance.
Hill, a graduating senior, attributes his recent success with "Hidden Wounds" to his previous work in writing dramas containing strong underlying messages of faith. Hill’s repertoire also boasts the play entitled, “All that Glitters Ain’t Gold,” for which he was the director and the star. The production followed the story of Bishop Jones and his son Keith, a gifted singer within his father’s church who succumbs to the temptation of fame. Along the way, Keith loses his faith and falls away from God. Yet, in the end, he rejoins the church and reconnects with his beliefs. The performance was held at Berea Baptist Church during the spring of 2005. As Hill departs from Berea, he says he will continue his playwriting for future productions.
"Hidden Wounds" was sophomore CeDarian Crawford's independent production debut at Berea College. Crawford attributes his and Hill's success their ability to pray, brainstorm and write as a team in the months preceding the performance. Both gentlemen hoped that the spiritual background of the play would touch the hearts of many individuals struggling with past issues and open them up "let go and let God have his way."
“Our prayer is that through this production people's lives (were) changed and people (could) release their pain and learn to forgive and love,” says Hill.
Crawford and Hill constructed the play and selected the actors with the assistance of song writers and other crew during the fall semester. “A lot of work went into this production," Hill explains. "We first interviewed Earnest Sloan then proceeded to form a production team and organize the casting for the fall semester. We rehearsed since January and presented the show in May,” explained Hill.
Sophomore Tianna Williams was chosen to play Lisa, Kingston's close friend. “I feel that the production has helped me to work through my issues of forgiveness," Williams admits. "There are several people very close to me that I began to forgive as a result of the show’s ministry.”
Audience members enjoyed the play's serious drama intertwined with comedic antics. Characters accompanying Kingston onstage included Bishop, a quirky old man with a penchant for funny praise and preaching; Dr. Mike, Tony's counselor; Tonya Kingston, Tony’s abusive mother; Isaiah Kingston, Tony’s younger brother; and Lindell Kingston, Tony’s father. “I liked the comedy aspect of the Bishop," says Keisha Burke, a senior. "He served as comedic relief during tense moments within the play, but always shared some religious teaching along the way.”
“It’s so inspiring and powerful to have plays that address the issues of the American family,” adds sophomore Amanda Lucas.
Hill’s passion for ministry will certainly follow him long after he leaves Berea. “I plan to do full-time ministry in the near future which includes ministry of the arts and preaching," he explains. "As for now I am planning to work in the public relations and advertising area.”
In keeping with the play's central theme of uniting family under God’s guidance, Hill and Crawford closed their production with the advice, “A family that prays together, stays together.”