George Guillot Sr.
The Athens Review
In Smoke On The Mountain Part II Sanders Family Christmas, the Henderson County Performing Arts Center has gathered some of Henderson County’s best musicians and actors and put them all together to perform for you.
It’s a performance marked by strong voices with perfect pitch, beautiful harmonies, excellent musicians and witnessing stories that keep you on the edge of your seat and the uproarious laughter that fills the soul.
Burl Sanders (Bob Schoonover) leads this Christmas revival with a strong presence, even when Mrs. Sanders (Maria Ogburn) tries to take over — constantly!
All of the actors are veterans of the stage and their talent shines. As a family of singers, they ring the rafters with perfect harmony and as individual performers you can’t say enough about them. Stanley Sanders (David Young) is brother to Burl and a successful singer, movie actor, who even knows Gene Autry. He comes home to perform with his family, and when he sings River of Memories with backup harmony, you can almost see the scenery along the river.
The twins, Dennis (Beau Humble) and Denise (Channing Horton) work so well together you would think they had been working together all their young lives. As in all families, there is always one who doesn’t have that great voice and doesn’t sing. In the Sanders clan, that is oldest sister June (Natalie Rosser), who has learned to sign so that if ever the congregation has a deaf member, they won’t miss a thing, so declares the Reverend and love interest, Marvin Oglethorpe (Gary McDonald).
You will laugh constantly at June Sanders signing and you can almost interpret all of her gyrations. The musicians and chorus that back up the Sanders
Family Singers are all relatives and they all do an outstanding job. I have to give kudos to the ladies in the Amen Corner. These ladies from Mount Pleasant Baptist Church are all local celebrities who give their approval or disapproval of what is going on during the evening’s events. They really add to the overall fun of the show.
A must-see performance, you can catch the last two shows this Friday and Saturday at the Henderson County Performing Arts Center. Reservations are highly recommended by calling 903-675-3908.