In “A Tuff Shuffle,” Charlotte’s Danny Mullen Takes the TAS Audience Backstage with Louis Armstrong

Danny Mullen will perform his one-man show, "A Tuff Shuffle: Backstage with Louis Armstrong," for the Theater of the American South (Brian Gomsak Photography)

On tap in Danny Mullen’s “A Tuff Shuffle” is home-made gumbo, cooked up by Louis Armstrong himself on his dressing-room hotplate, and an intimate but wide-ranging and remarkably frank and fearless PG-13-rated autobiographical monologue, punctuated with brief but bracing reprises of Armstrong’s greatest (vocal) hits, such as “Do You Know What It Means to Miss New Orleans?”; “(What Did I Do to Be So) Black and Blue?”; “A Kiss to Build a Dream On”; “What a Wonderful World”; and “Hello, Dolly!”

No Way to Treat a Lady: The Violence is Over the Top in the TAS Production of “A Streetcar Named Desire”

Triangle actors Jason Sharp and Betsy Henderson star as Stanley and Blanche in "A Streetcar Named Desire" at the Boykin Center in Wilson (photo by Keith Barnes)

Tennessee Williams meant for Stanley be a crude, lower-class, but upward-aspiring American ethnic of Polish descent and for his and Stella’s apartment to be a pressure cooker, but I seriously doubt if he meant for Stanley to explode into physical violence — smashing crockery, manhandling Stella, throttling and eventually raping Blanche — as often as he does in the current Theater of the American South presentation of “A Streetcar Named Desire.” Indeed, the violence that Hurricane Stanley inflicts on his sister-in-law and wife and their meager possessions necessitates lengthy scene changes that dissipate dramatic tension.

TAS’ 2012 Season Includes “A Streetcar Named  Desire” and a Solo About Louis Armstrong

The Theater of the American South's 2012 season includes Tennessee Williams' "A Streetcar Named Desire" and "A Tuff Shuffle," Danny Mullen's one-man show about jazz trumpeter and singer Louis "Satchmo" Armstrong

The 2012 season of the Theater of the American South, a professional theater founded in 2006, will include Tennessee Williams’ 1948 Pulitzer Prize-winning drama, “A Streetcar Named Desire,” and “A Tuff Shuffle: Backstage with Louis Armstrong,” a critically acclaimed one-man show written and performed by Danny Mullen. “A Tuff Shuffle” will play May 10-27 in the Lauren Kennedy and Alan Campbell Theatre at Barton College in Wilson, NC; and “A Streetcar Named Desire” will play May 11-27 in the Edna Boykin Cultural Center in downtown Wilson.

Four Civil War Re-enactors, a Park Ranger, and a Souvenir Seller Meet in Doris Baizley’s Offbeat Comedy/Drama “Shiloh Rules” in Wilson

"Shiloh Rules" features an all-female cast

“The play is larger than it first appears,” claims director Katja Hill. “We meet six remarkable women who are involved in different ways in a re-enactment of the Battle of Shiloh …. [‘Shiloh Rules’] is set in 2011, but all the characters go back in time to 1862 through a re-enactment that becomes terrifyingly real.”

“The Civil War in Song & Legend” Stars Bill Schustik

Bill Schustik wrote and performs "The Civil War in Song & Legend"

“The Civil War in Song & Legend,” written and performed by acclaimed American troubadour Bill Schustik, offers a highly entertaining musical reconstruction of what many Southerners still call the War of Northern Aggression.