Aug 23, 24, 25 and 29, 30, 31, 2019

Walking Across Egypt
Adapted by Catherine Busch
from the novel by Clyde Edgerton


Directed by Phil Funkenbusch


Upon discovering a stray dog on her back porch, Mattie Rigsbee decides she’s too old to keep a pet and calls the dogcatcher.  Little does she know that the dogcatcher, Lamar Benfield, will open her eyes to a world that includes car theft prison breaks, and his nephew, a juvenile delinquent named Wesley, who is as desperate for a family as she is. Add in to the mix, her over-protective next-door-neighbors and her 50-year-old never-married son, all joining the drama.  Armed with only her mouth-watering cornbread and a deep abiding faith, Mattie is determined to bring Wesley to the side of God and good Southern manners.  And there will be hymn-singing.


     “A winner, a homespun romp that I suspect Mark Twain would have loved.”

                                                                                                     ---  The Columbia State

     “A crowd-pleaser from start to end.”

                                                                                                     --- Citizen-Times (Asheville, NC)


     “An unpretentious story that will linger like the last strains of a favorite hymn.

      It is more enjoyable than a pitcher full of sweet tea and one of Mattie’s home-cooked       dinners.”


                                                                                                   --- The Atlanta Journal

AUDITONS:  Sign up here for an audition time.

For more information regarding this fabulous play, click here for the fb page.


Character Descriptions:

Mattie Rigsbee  (60s-70s)      strong-minded; loves singing hymns

Robert Rigsbee  (40s-)            her son; manager of local Convenient Store

Lamar Benfield  (20s-30s)    local dogcatcher; good-hearted

Wesley Benfield  (16)              Lamar’s nephew; currently at a youth farm for stealing

Alora Swanson  (40s-60s)     Mattie’s neighbor, a fan of soap operas

Finner Swanson  (40s-60s)   Alora’s husband; loves adventure

Reverend Bass  (30s-50s)      Minister of Listre Baptist Church   (could be played by a female)

Sheriff Tillman  (30s-40s)     Town Sheriff   (could be played by a female)

Choir Members  (all ages)


For the roles of Maddie & Choir Members: please prepare a hymn to sing acapella.

Rehearsals begin week of July 9th       



Meet the Director: Phil Funkenbusch

Phil Funkenbusch lives in Petersburg and works at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library & Museum.  His theater work is mostly behind-the-scenes, and has recently directed numerous plays at TIP including Spoon River Anthology, My Heart's Home, To Kill a Mockingbird, and The Trip to Bountiful, Dividing the Estate and The Glass Menagerie and Ken Bradbury’s Singing at Seven at Jacksonville Theater Guild. He has directed numerous productions at the ALPLM as well.  Phil has performed onstage at New Salem in Our Town, The Fantasticks and A Midsummer Night’s Dream. He played Gus the Theater Cat in Cats at the Hoogland Center for the Arts and several Godspell productions many years ago.