Cast weaves laughs into drama

Humor never felt so good, especially when you are laughing at a voluptuous little person, a gum-smacking, around-the-way girl and a flamboyant gay man (two snaps).

On Sunday, Jan. 11, guests crowded FAMU’s Lee Hall to watch Shelly Garrett’s stage play, “Beauty Shop: Under New Management.”

The play takes place in Atlanta at the 2K4 Beauty Shop, owned by Big Mama Lucille, a proud and sassy little person who thinks she looks like a shorter version of Beyonce.

Ends are trimmed, eyes are rolled, eyebrows are waxed and the drama is endless. Imagine the movie “Barbershop” as a stage play.

The play is filled with a cast of creative characters.

Ghetto-girl Tameka spends a great deal of her time repeatedly claiming “I ain’t hoochie,” while Chris, the epitome of a stereotypically gay hairdresser, cracks jokes with every turn of the chair (two snaps).

Stylists and the clientele fight over their cheating men while others wish they had one.

The few that are left spend their time looking for love in all the wrong Internet chat rooms.

While most of the ladies are rolling their necks and fighting over their men, Garrett makes a surprising point that true love sings of no more drama.

Choreographed dance routines, audience interaction, and enough jokes to fill a week’s worth of Tyler Perry’s “Madea” videos, also help keep the audience entertained.

Beauty Shop: Under New Management also stars D. Ellis from BET’s Comic View. Ellis helped to get the play off to a good start with a brief comical skit.

He did not shy away from calling people out in the audience as they staggered in late: “Show started at 4 o’clock, but you know how we do.”

FAMU graduate and Blazin 102.3 FM radio personality Renee Simone also made cameo appearances during the play.

Scenes of a salon-style showdown (“Who in here is sleeping with my man?”), was nothing new, but the underlying love story was anything but typical. Big Mama Lucille found a first-class gentleman whose multi-ranged solos captivated the audience.

Garrett’s attempt to entertain was not pointless. He was able to get one major theme across in the story – you do not have to be tall to get it all.

Contact Tiffany Pitts at