Concert to honor King

The Charleston Symphony Orchestra and the Charleston Office of Cultural Affairs will hold a celebration Saturday of the birthday of Martin Luther King Jr. at the Gaillard Auditorium.

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One of the reasons to live in Charleston is the variety of music that is performed, and those who are honored by it.

This year, the Charleston Symphony Orchestra Gospel Choir and its Spiritual Ensemble will honor the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with a musical portrait featuring gospel, spirituals and sound footage from many of King's major civil rights speeches. While some of the speeches may not be familiar, his "I Have a Dream" speech was a clear call for justice and equality, and one of his best-known. But merely reading the text won't give you the cadence and force of his voice, rising and falling over the lines:

"I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character."

The words and King need to be heard and seen to understand the power with which this man delivered his message. It's a lesson that many of us have learned in the 43 years since his death, but one that must be passed on to children and grandchildren until they have learned the lesson well.

The concert, "His Light Still Shines: A Musical Tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.," will be held at 7 p.m. Saturday (the holiday honoring his birthday is Jan. 16) at Royal Missionary Baptist Church, 4761 Luella Ave., North Charleston.

The performance is free and open to the public, but an entry ticket is required.

You can request up to four tickets in person at the North Charleston Cultural Arts Department in North Charleston City Hall or at Royal Missionary Baptist Church.

It's likely to be a full house, so don't expect to get in the door if you haven't planned ahead.

'The Turn of the Screw'

Based on the provocative tale of suspense, horror and repressed sexuality by the famed author Henry James, this adaptation gives the story yet another turn of its own.

A young governess journeys to a lonely English manor house to care for two recently orphaned children. But she is not their first governess. Her predecessor, Miss Jessel, drowned herself when she became pregnant by the sadistic valet Peter Quint, who was himself found dead soon after under mysterious circumstances. Now the governess has begun to see the specters of Quint and Jessel haunting the children, and she must find a way to stop the fiends before it is too late.

One frightening question tortures the would-be heroine: Are the ghosts real, or are they the product of her own fevered imagination?

Village Repertory veterans Robbie Thomas and Katherine Chaney Long take on the play, which varies from the story because just two actors appear in all the roles. Long plays the young governess determined to protect the children, and Thomas plays all the other parts, including the children's uncle, the housekeeper and 10-year-old Miles.

While it may be a ghost story and about children, this one is for adults for the sexual themes and subject matter. Leave the kids at home.

Directed by Village Producing Artistic Director Keely Enright, it opens Friday and runs for three weeks in January. Tickets can be purchased online at www.village playhouse.com or by calling the box office at 856-1579. The Village Playhouse is at 730 Coleman Blvd., Mount Pleasant.

Reach Stephanie Harvin at 937-5557 or sharvin@postand courier.com.