God's Man in Texas is in San Diego. The Old Globe Theatre hosts David Rambo's popular play on faith and power July 16-Aug. 26 on the Cassius Carter Centre Stage. The production officially opens July 22. Broadway's Leonard Foglia (Master Class, Wait Until Dark) directs.
In God's Man in Texas, young preacher Jerry comes up against the veteran man of God, Dr. Gottschall, who is unwilling to give up the Rock Baptist Church of Houston and his coveted Sunday morning TV broadcast to the upstart.
The play was a standout in the 1999 Humana Festival of New American Plays in Louisville, KY. It is inspired by the true story of a preacher who ascended to the pulpit of the First Baptist Church of Dallas and then quit 22 months later. Since Humana, the play has had six productions and is expected at Atlanta's Alliance Theatre in 2001.
Robert Pescovitz and Robert Symonds star as Dr. Jeremiah (Jerry) Mears and Dr. Philip Gottschall, respectively. Andy Taylor is featured as Hugo Taney, a reformed drug abuser who runs interference between the two preachers. Rambo has likened the three characters to the Christian concept of the Trinity.
The San Diego staging features new revisions by the author, who wrote to PBOL to say he finds the play " much more focused" in this incarnation. He is also pleased with director Foglia, whose "stylish theatrical abandon" is "exactly the quality I saw in the best of the big-time churches and their preachers, a kind of in-your-face glory." The design team for God's Man includes Robin Sanford Roberts (sets), Ann Archbold (lighting), Lewis Brown (costumes) and Jeff Ladman (sound). Raul Moncada is the stage manager.
Tickets are $42-$23. The Old Globe Theatre is located in Balboa Park, beside the Museum of Man. For tickets, call (619) 239-2255. The Old Globe is on the web at http://www.oldglobe.org.
-- By Christine Ehren
and Kenneth Jones