Gospel stage play explores Black couples during pandemic

“We talk about the emotional turmoil many endured inside the four walls of their home,” executive producer Tiffany Countryman said.

A play inspired by a local woman’s experience during the pandemic takes the stage Saturday, April 17 at The Mosaic at The Mall.

“Rona: The Aftermath” depicts how the Black Christian home was impacted — mentally, physically and spiritually — by the pandemic.

Tiffany Countryman of Dayton had only been married a few months when the coronavirus shut down much of the world. She shared her thoughts and feelings in online chats with friends during that time.

“We talked about things we didn’t know about ourselves and we didn’t know about our spouses and that just came to a head,” she said. “As an artist it just really inspired me, so I had to put this on stage.”

Countryman, the executive producer of the play, worked with co-writer Tameka Ludd. Three original songs were composed for the production by Stevin Crane, the musical director. Crane’s artistic credits include his portrayal of James “Thunder” Early in Beavercreek Community Theatre’s 2018 production of “Dreamgirls.”

The creative team explores the Black community’s experience in 2020 through the lives of two African American couples. The pandemic is interwoven with the killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery.

“We had to endure the riots, the presidential race and the attacks while being in this pandemic,” Countryman said. “While others dealt with the stress of losing jobs, homes and loved ones, we had that additional pressure. It was very difficult.”

An essential worker, pastor, teacher and an entrepreneur are among the characters portrayed by Dayton actors Kenton Curtis, Rhea Adkins, Milton Wilkes and Crystal Schultz.

“Anybody can relate to the characters in this show,” Countryman said. “We talk about the emotional turmoil many endured inside the four walls of their home. They may have felt like they were going through it alone but when they see this show they will see that they weren’t alone at all. We were all dealing with the pandemic in a very personal way.”


What: “Rona: The Aftermath”

When: Saturday, April 17 at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m.

Where: The Mosaic At The Mall, 2727 Fairfield Commons Blvd. at the Fairfield Commons Mall in Beavercreek

Cost: Tickets range from $25-$30. A virtual ticket for 48-hour access is $15

Tickets: Visit the event’s Eventbrite page.

FYI: COVID-19 guidelines for Ohio will be enforced

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