November 11, 2019 | 7 pm
WISE, VA. — “Sergeant York: The Play” is presented at Lee Theatre in Pennington Gap on Monday, Nov. 11 at 7 p.m. Written and directed by Lisa Soland, this one-man-show starring Greg Helton depicts the life and times of Pall Mall, Tennessee, resident Sergeant York. Alvin C. York was one of the most decorated United States Army soldiers of World War I. He received the Medal of Honor for leading an attack on a German machine gun nest wherein he killed 28 German soldiers and singlehandedly captured 132 others in the battle of the Argonne forest, France. Gary Cooper won an Academy Award for best actor portraying York in the 1941 film, “Sergeant York.”
Soland’s work also dramatizes what York accomplished in his community following the war. She received a Tennessee Arts Commission Grant for her work on the play and teaches playwriting at Maryville College. Soland has over 50 international publications with four of the top play publishers, and has produced and/or directed over 100 shows, most of which have been premieres.
Helton was born and raised in Morristown, Tennessee, and has been involved in many theater productions throughout the region, including Soland’s play “Waiting.
“Sergeant York: The Play” originally opened in the HUB on the campus of West Park Baptist Church April 20, 2018, and the one-man show has been touring ever since, with performances in Pall Mall, the Alvin York Institute in Jamestown and New York City.
Soland did two years of research to put the play together, wanting to ensure its historical accuracy. Deborah York, executive director of the Sergeant York Patriotic Foundationand great granddaughter of Alvin York, said about the play“‘Sergeant York: The Play’ is wonderful. Playwright Lisa Soland has really captured the heart and soul of what my great grandfather, Alvin York, was all about. She’s done extensive research, not only on Sergeant York, but interviews with the family, spending a lot of time in Pall Mall, getting to know the culture and the family, and the story about the man behind the medals. This play captures Sergeant York’s loyalty to God and country, and his service to the community. It’s simply a wonderful play.”
“Sergeant York: The Play” is presented Monday, Nov. 11 at 7 p.m. at Lee Theatre in Pennington Gap, Virginia. A talkback with Soland and Helton follow the performance. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased in advance at leetheatre.org. All students and veterans are free to attend, and Pro-Art season tickets are honored. For more information and to purchase season tickets, visit proartva.org.