Khyel Sherman Roberson, writer, director and performer in the region-based Showtime Theatre productions’ “Life and How to Change It,” has refined musical tastes for a 24-year-old.
One of the skits in his play is a tap dance piece to “Honey Pie,” a deep cut from the Fab Four’s 1968 “White Album.” Roberson also selected “Vienna,” a hidden gem from Billy Joel’s 1977 album “The Stranger,” for another performance in his production.
“I actually have an old soul,” Roberson said. “My favorite band is The Beatles.”
Roberson will bring “Life” to life at Hammond’s Beatniks on Conkey Sept. 23 and 24. A resident of Calumet City and a graduate of Western Illinois University in downstate Macomb, Illinois, Roberson has graced the Beatniks’ stage in several past plays.
“Life” marks his first self-penned full-length production to be brought to the Beatniks stage.
Described by its creator as a “musical variety show,” “Life” is made up of more than a dozen short skits and songs both humorous and pensive. While the subjects and songs vary from piece to piece in terms of subject, Roberson noted an underlying message in his production.
“I wanted to create a show that said that it’s alright to go through life changes, and that everything you go through is meant to change you,” he said. “It’s about loving yourself and those that are around you.”
Sherman is joined onstage for “Life” by Emily Gulbrandsun from Gary, T.J. Patrick from South Holland and Chloe Mimms from Chicago.
“I wanted to create a show that everyone can relate to, whether you’re old or young or middle aged,” Roberson said. “I hope people will see the show and understand that whatever they’re going through in life, whether it’s good or bad or something in between, that it’s meant to make you a better person.”
Beatniks will follow “Life” up with an encore performance of area writer/actor Tim Campos’ “Screw It, Doin’ Time On the Line” for one night only Sept. 30.