The outdoor drama Strike at the Wind! is returning to its roots–where it began more than 40 years ago.
After a 10-year hiatus, the beloved play has been staged the last two years at Givens Performing Arts Center. This summer, audiences will enjoy Strike at the Wind! under the stars at the historic Adolph Dial Amphitheater at the Lumbee Tribe Cultural Center.
Three shows are scheduled for Thursday through Saturday, with showtimes of 8 p.m. each day. All shows are sold out. A pre-show performance of the music of “Strike at the Wind!” by local musician Charly Lowry will begin each night at 6:30 p.m. Food vendors will be on site each night.
Two seating areas will be available for patrons. Limited chair seating will be available on a first-come, first-served basis. A newly sodded section near the stage will be an option. Ticket holders may bring lounge chairs or blankets for lawn seating, but coolers are not permitted.
Strike at the Wind! was first performed in 1976 at the amphitheater overlooking the scenic Country Club Lake. It continued for 20 seasons, ending in 1996. The play returned in 1999 and 2007, and was revived again in 2017 thanks to the collaborative efforts of UNC Pembroke, the Lumbee Tribe and the local community.
“I played Henry for six years, there is nothing like being on the amphitheater stage at the Culture Center,” said Tribal Chairman Harvey Godwin Jr. “The story of Henry Berry is uniquely felt by the audience when you’re in the elements experiencing the story of Henry Berry close by his old stomping grounds.
“The Lumbee Tribe looks forward to hosting visitors at the Cultural Center as SATW returns to its home. We encourage people to make it an all-day event. Guests can visit the Cultural Center, take their family for a swim at the renovated pool or tour the Spring Moon Garden Patch.”
Strike the Wind! tells the story of the Lowrie War in 1865. It chronicles the life of Henry Berry Lowrie who led a band of men in a seven-year battle against those he believed killed his father and brother.
Jonathan Drahos, the play’s director, said he’s thrilled to see the play return outdoors.
“The play belongs outdoors. Randolph Umberger wrote it as an outdoor drama 40 years ago,” said Drahos, associate professor and director of Theatre at UNCP.
“Although I have adapted the play for two consecutive years as an indoor experiment, I believe it will resonate with our audience more deeply as a community event at the Cultural Center. I am excited to collaborate with the Lumbee Tribe, The University of North Carolina at Pembroke, and our wonderful cast in this year’s production.”
Matthew Jacobs and Wynona Oxendine who play Henry Berry and Rhoda Strong are back in the lead roles for the third straight year. The event will be a family-friendly day of fun. The Tribe will be offering all amenities available at the Cultural Center on performance days and patrons are encouraged to spend the day at the swimming pool, accessible playground, or taking in the scenery.
The Cultural Center is located at 638 Terry Sanford Drive, Maxton, less than a mile from Purnell Swett High School.
The shows begin at 8 p.m. Tickets can be purchased at the GPAC box office from Mondays through Fridays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., by calling 910.521.6361 or online at uncp.edu/gpactickets.
For more information, visit uncp.edu/satw.