Neva Howell, then a local actress and director, performed Eudora Welty’s hilarious short story, Why I Live at the P.O. in a creatively adapted one-woman show at Barking Legs on Saturday, April 16, 1994, to a full house. This kind of versatility in presenting performances at BLT has continued proudly, as originality and inspiration have been showcased for 30 years.

Neva worked for three years on the idea. A seed was planted after she heard Ms. Welty narrate the story in her soft, southern cadences on a tape from the public library. Neva practically rolled in the floor with laughter! She wrote to Eudora, a legendary southern writer, and patiently waited for a response.

After two years, Ms. Welty responded through her literary agents, granting permission to adapt the story only in a one-act form. Sorghum flows slowly but surely toward the melted butter on hot biscuits or pancakes! Neva pitched it to Ann Law, who obtained a small performance grant from Allied Arts, the forerunner of today’s ArtsBuild. Bravo!

Ann’s enthusiastic allegiance is always to the performers whose hearts, souls, and life experiences bring ideas and stories to life.


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