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Regent University Theatre is Rolling on the Big River

The Mississippi River became an icon in the abolition of slavery – a pulsing undercurrent of hope for those men and women who’d yet to see the light of freedom.

Regent University Theatre remembers this generation of people as Big River opens on the Dede Robertson Theatre in the Communication & Performing Arts Center Friday, April 24-26, and continues the following weekend, May 1-3. Friday-Saturday performances begin at 7:30 p.m. with weekend matinees at 2:30 p.m.

Purchase tickets at the Regent Box Office.

In this telling of Mark Twain’s the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, the classic characters, Huck (Zach Phaneuf) and Jim (Theodore Holmes) come to life in a vibrant, adventurous, musical adaptation of the beloved classic.

“Welcome to a troubled America in a time of change. Before the Emancipation Proclamation freed the slaves. Before schooling was widespread,” said L. Derek Leonidoff, director for the production and adjunct theatre professor. “The messages in this musical, like the classic upon which it is based, rippled out our own time.”

Leonidoff explained that Big River is the mash-up musical of “freedom and friendship,” and that the famous bond between Huck and Jim “transcends the prejudices of the people that they live among.”

Leonidoff has performed in two productions of Big River and said that his life has been “profoundly” impacted by his roles in the performances, with its rich content and the “heart” of the masterpiece that “binds the cast, crew and even the audience.”

“You’re on this journey with us,” said Leonidoff. “Welcome to the mighty Mississippi river! Let’s go have an adventure!”

Learn more about Regent University’s School of Communication & the Arts.