FLINT, MI — Laughter and inspiration is needed in this city, says one Flint area man – And he plans to bring it one play at a time.
Local playwright, Andrew L. Aikins, is set to debut his latest work “God Kissed It, The Devil Missed” it at the University of Michigan-Flint Theatre on July 7, 2017 from 7 to 9 p.m.
Aikins, 45, grew up in Flint and describes his play as inspirational yet comedic.
“All of my plays are inspirational,” said Aikins. “With the Flint Water Crisis and all of the negative attention the city has received it’s good to give people something to laugh at.”
Aikins launched his company, Andrew Aikins Productions, nearly six years ago but says he started writing plays in elementary school.
“When I was in elementary school I would write plays and give my cousins parts and they would act them out,” Aikins said. “ I have written church production and school productions. As I got older my writing went into me doing music. I always wrote.”
He has collaborated with other playwrights, producers and promoters throughout the years but only produces plays written by him under his production company.
In 2015, he collaborated with promoter Eballer Smith to bring play, “Nothin’ But Love – Forgiveness,” to The Whiting Auditorium. Aikins is also a 2014 and 2015 Fli-City Award.
“God Kissed It, The Devil Missed It” is a story of relationship challenges that young couples face as they try to find love and follow God’s will.
“My plays are based on real life experiences,” Aikins said. “My own experience. A lot of the meat of my stories is things that I’ve already been through and experienced and how I overcame them because I wasn’t always saved.”
He will introduce the audience to confusion and love nearly lost and a character that he knows all to well.
“JP is a big part of my past,” said Aikins of the character that has been labeled the player. “When you see him you are going to hate him. That was me for a number of years before I settle down and decided to get married…Marriage kind of evens you out… Especially when you have a successful marriage. Every marriage has its problems but when you find that combination and works, and it’s a God-fearing union and it’s ordained by God, when you get that match up it evens you out. I think clearer. I think faster. I make decisions and I have so much confidence in my decisions because of that.”
Aikins wife of 13 years, Sherida Aikins, 43, said it’s a family business.
“We step in wherever he needs help, she said. “There is never a dull moment with him. It’s not always easy but we get it done.” During productions you can find Sherida along with the couple’s five children helping out whether its reading lines, ticket sales or setting up the stage.
Most of his talent is drawn from word of mouth, connections and social media. But Aikins says Flint isn’t short of talent.
“We’ve got so much talent in Flint it’s ridiculous,” said Aikins. “You can throw a rock and hit somebody with talent in Flint. “We’ve got some of the best chefs, some of the best athletes, some of the best writers and some of the best actors and actresses. But the fear holds them back.”Aikins typically has a Flint-area cast giving local talent an opportunity to showcase their talents
“I have to give that boost of confidence then they fall in love with it,” Aikins said. “Once you fall in love with it, it becomes easy. Then I can groom you and you get you exactly where I need you.”
For more information about “God Kissed It, The Devil Missed It” click here or view details below.
Stage play: “God Kissed It, The Devil Missed It”
When: Friday, July 7, 2017, doors open at 6: 30 p.m. with the play set to run from 7 to 9 p.m.
Where: University of Michigan-Flint Theatre, 303 East Kearsley Street, Flint MI 48502
Cost: Tickets can be purchased at the door for $25