The fundamentalist slogan “God made Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve” inspired playwright Paul Rudnick’s 1998 play “The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told.”
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In it, said Adam and Steve navigate an alternative version of Biblical history with a lesbian couple, Jane and Mabel.
Atlanta’s Out Front Theatre Company is dedicated to LGBT stories and is producing “The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told.” It is set to open at the end of the month, but founder and Producing Artistic Director Paul Conroy has been receiving thousands of emails and phone calls condemning the play as blasphemous.
Most of the correspondence comes from a group called America Needs Fatima. Out Front has received more than 40,000 signatures on an online petition that begins, “I vehemently protest your showing the blasphemous play The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told, which, among other blasphemies, refers to the Virgin Mary as a lesbian. Please cancel your showing of it.”
Conroy, the actors and Out Front staff have not let the onslaught of correspondence disrupt their rehearsal schedule, though they are documenting all the complaints.
“My heart really was heavy. There are messages coming from around the world to us,” Conroy said in an interview with “City Lights” host Lois Reitzes. He added that he has yet responded to any of the messages.
“I think everyone has their individual beliefs and they are entitled to that,” he said. “If that’s what they believe, they don’t have to come and see our production, but to disrupt a production is where I don’t think it’s okay.”
Conroy said he and Out Front are preparing for potential protesters at the shows. “The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told” opens April 27.