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CAST 20+

Freely Adapted by Edward Morgan

A post-modern take on Mark Twain’s classic as Old Huck and Old Jim “conjure” the famous story of their youth. At first they simply watch and comment on the events. Then they encounter their younger selves. Then they’re swept up into the story. The play includes a rich blend of southern folk music.


  • Milwaukee Repertory Theatre (2002)




“A beautifully produced and well-acted premiere production. …Perhaps because (Morgan) was not trying to write a straightforward adaptation of the book, the play works much better than many attempts to transfer the page to the stage. …a fluidity largely due to Morgan’s shrewd use of period music – old country, blues and spirituals – to connect the scenes. Sharp, clear and sure-handed acting from the entire cast provides the richly colored portrait of river life created by Twain and recreated by Morgan. Starting with the first appearance of the “Huck Finn” characters rising through a fog-enshrouded trap door, Morgan the director gives the piece a strong theatricality.”   

- Milwaukee Journal Sentinel


“On the Rep's mainstage, the world premiere of Sounding the River is making it politically safe for theatrical adaptations of The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Written by Rep associate artistic director Edward Morgan, the play addresses in an unusual way the charges of racism that have been leveled against Mark Twain's novel. Sounding the River begins with Huck and the escaped slave Jim reunited as senior citizens. Using an old lamp that Huck claims to have taken from Twain's home, the two travel back in time … The old fellows observe the trip from the fringes of the action, commenting on it from the perspective of their advanced years. With those comments, Morgan . . . establishes the irony employed by Twain in writing about the partnership between a racist white boy and a runaway slave fleeing oppression together. . . . Sean McNall epitomizes the young Huck and Paul Bentzen and Mark Corkins provide gems of comic character acting in their portrayals of the king and the duke.”     

- Back Stage

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