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El Paso Playhouse presents ‘Steel Magnolias’

Sergio Zamora
“Steel Magnolias” will run at the El Paso Playhouse until Saturday Aug. 8

The El Paso Playhouse, the city’s longest-running community theater, introduced their 2015-2016 season with the opening of the comedy-drama play “Steel Magnolias.”

The play opened on July 17 at the El Paso Playhouse, located at 2501 Montana Ave., and will run until Aug. 8.

Originally written by Robert Harling, “Steel Magnolias” is based on a true story that takes place at Truvy’s Beauty Salon in Chinquapin, La., where various women go get their hair done.

Truvy, who counts on help from her new assistant Annelle, shampoos her clients’ hair while giving advice to rich and eccentric woman such as Ouiser, a local social leader, M’Lynn and Miss Clairee.

M’Lynn’s daughter, Shelby, is about to get married, but her diabetic condition puts not only her pregnancy at risk but her entire life as well. Shelby’s condition also affects the rest of the characters in the play, creating a bond that grows through both the good and bad times.

“Steel Magnolias’ is and always has been a crowd favorite,” said Veronica Frescas, the play’s director. “Many, of course, are familiar with the movie that came out in 1989. The main difference in the theater version is that it takes place in two acts–four scenes. It has been so time-honored because we all can identify with friendship, family and loss.”

El Paso Playhouse’s “Steel Magnolias” was created in a short period of time. From auditions to opening night, the play took only six and a half weeks to be produced.

“Because of so much support and not to mention the outstanding talent, it all came together very well,” Frescas said.

Eurydice Saucedo, senior anthropology major, is one of the actors in the play.

“I got involved with theater due to an ethnographic study I was doing in anthropology,” Saucedo said. “School was the way I got involved with theater and this company many moons ago. I love every aspect of it, it has really helped me connect with the theory and applied it not just to theater practicum but everyday life.”

For Saucedo, theater is a way for her to constantly learn about different topics.

“As an artist, one gets to live many lives and that makes me a student for life,” Saucedo said.

The costumes for “Steel Magnolias” were created by Jaime Barba, who is also the costume designer at the UTEP Dinner Theatre and artistic director of VIVA! El Paso. John Estrada and Romi Adams were in charge of stage design. Lighting design was done by current UTEP student Patrick Marshall.

“Steel Magnolias” is a play based on friendship and is suitable for all audiences.

“We recognize these women as ourselves–as our mother, our sister or a best friend,” Frescas said. “It is often humorous, at times heartbreaking and, ultimately, unique and special.”

For more information about “Steel Magnolias” and the El Paso Playhouse, please visit their website at or call the El Paso Playhouse box office at (915) 532-1317.

Fernanda Leon may be reached at [email protected]







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El Paso Playhouse presents ‘Steel Magnolias’