From stage to page: the artistic journey of “Blood Sisters: The Musical”

Blood Sisters the novel

The novel “Generational Curses” was based on the stage musical that was performed in Orlando in 2012.


HAMPTON ROADS, VA — Stage productions have the ability to reach out, grab your heart, and deeply move audiences. Malikah R. Harris found that out in 2012 when she brought her production “Blood Sisters: The Musical” to the Orlando International Fringe Theatre Festival, and won rave reviews.

Today, Harris, who lives in Virginia, has created a different format for “Blood Sisters,” the story about a typical American single parent family where Joanna Karen Smith — or simply “Momma” — has relied on her deep sense of faith as she raised her children. Now, after more than 32 years of self-sacrifice, Momma is fed up and is giving her grown daughters 5 months to put their lives together.

Harris has taken the story, and put it into novel form. For audiences who did not see the theatrical version of “Blood Sisters,” they can visit Amazon and get the book, and follow the story of Momma and her daughters there. Continue reading

Wonder Woman movie inspires social gathering in Polk County

save the day wonder woman

The new “Wonder Woman” movie opening on Friday has inspired a special social gathering for women in Lakeland this weekend.

LAKELAND — Friday marks the opening of the new Warner Bros. movie “Wonder Woman,” starring Gal Gadot as Diana, princess of the Amazons, who is trained to be a warrior that can’t be conquered. Her life is dramatically altered when she meets an American pilot who tells her about the terrible war going on in the outside world.
The movie, based on the DC comic book created by William Moulton Marston, has inspired more than 50 women in Polk County to gather on Saturday for a special event marking the film’s opening.
It’s all a celebration of the talent in Polk County’s world of successful business women.
The plan is to watch the movie at the Lakeside Village open air shopping mall. The women plan to gather at the mall around 1 p.m. for a celebration lunch at Grillsmith’s on Saturday, then catching a 3:45 p.m. IMAX 3D showing of the film at the Cobb Theater.

Local Wonder Women

The event was organized by Merissa Green, a former news reporter at The Lakeland Ledger. Green said during the lunch, the women plan to talk about their own unique Wonder Woman experiences, as well as doing some networking.
At least one of them will win a Funko Pop Wonder Woman in an invisible jet, courtesy of the Arcade 80s, a video game store in Winter Haven. Continue reading

Fringe Review: “Molly’s Comedy Cabaret”

Molly's Comedy Cabaret Orlando Fringe

“Molly’s Comedy Cabaret” is a hilarious show by Canadian singer and entertainer Molly Wilson.

ORLANDO – Watching singer and entertainer Molly Wilson perform her cabaret show at the Orlando International Fringe Theatre Festival, I thought for a moment about what it takes to create a really first-rate solo act.
I had already seen quite a few solo shows at Fringe this month, ranging from singers to dramatic readings to intense dramas.
Molly Wilson’s show has a fairly simple and straightforward concept: Molly’s stunningly beautiful voice is used to great effect on some well-chosen songs, and she has great comedic timing. By the end of the hour, as Molly joked with the audience and thanked them for coming, I couldn’t help think about how much work she must have done creating this show; because while it can be summed up as songs and comedy, Molly Wilson is wonderfully entertaining, and truly knows how to reach an audience.
In the beginning of the show, Molly does a particularly effective job of not only introducing herself, but also touching something heartfelt in so many of us: the idea of the small town kid with big dreams. A native of the small town of Chilliwack, British Columbia, Molly noted that the locals often asked her why she couldn’t pursue a practical profession, like being a dentist, rather than aiming to become an actress and singer.

Her response: to turn to her mom and say no, singing is her true goal in life. Continue reading

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