*What happens when a troubled young mother abandons her children and then re-enters their lives 20 years later?
That’s the emotionally charged premise of “Love Me or Leave Me,” a powerful and inspirational musical stage play produced exclusively for GMC, America’s favorite channel for uplifting music and family entertainment.
“Love Me or Leave Me” makes its television world premiere on GMC on Saturday, Nov. 13th at 7 p.m. ET with encore broadcasts at 9 p.m. and 11 p.m.
“Love Me or Leave Me” combines hilarious comedy, true-to-life drama and rousing song with a third-act bombshell that underscores the play’s themes of responsibility and forgiveness while packing an unexpected emotional punch. Written and directed by John Ruffin, it stars Angela Evans, Shirley Murdock (A Mother’s Prayer), Elise Neal (Hustle & Flow, “The Hughleys”), Christian Keyes (Madea Goes to Jail) and Clifton Powell (Ray, Woman Thou Art Loosed, “Army Wives”).
Cynthia Wyatt (Evans) is a troubled teen who abandons her fraternal twin infants, leaving her mother (Murdock) to raise the children. Now, 20 years later, one of the twins (Neal) is an attorney set to marry the man of her dreams (Keyes); the other (Payne) is an unemployed man-child. Both have issues. When Cynthia returns out of the blue, hoping to reclaim her place in their lives, no one is spared the soul-searching that ensues. Will Cynthia be accepted by her children and the grandmother who raised them? Will they understand why she left? And can they ever find it in their hearts to forgive her?
“‘Love Me or Leave Me’ is a great fit for our network,” said Leslie Chesloff, executive vice president of programming at GMC. “With its powerful music and authentic drama, it is an entertaining and deeply engaging play that runs the gamut of situations people encounter in life, while also offering an empowering message that centers on family values and love. We are extremely proud to bring it to our viewers.”
“The Gospel theatre genre of entertainment is one that has inspired people for decades and consistently brings uplifting messages through real life portrayals,” said Ruffin. “Elevating its platform through GMC and making it accessible to people everywhere, to live and share their stories and to know they are not alone in their struggles and victories, is a dream come true.”
“Love Me or Leave Me” also stars Carl Anthony Payne II (“The Cosby Show,” “Martin”), Terrell Carter (Diary of a Mad Black Woman, Madea’s Class Reunion, “Meet the Browns”) and Terri J. Vaughn (“Meet the Browns,” “All of Us,” “The Steve Harvey Show”). Ruffin’s other theatrical writing credits include “I Won’t Go Back,” “It’s Too Good To Be True,” “We’re Dreaming of You, Selena,” “The Other Woman,” “All for Love,” “No More Sheets,” and “Mr. Right Now or Mr. Wrong Later.” Ruffin also directed and produced a bi-weekly variety show, “Gospeltime, Live At The Legacy.”
The GMC broadcast of “Love Me or Leave Me” is produced by Swirl Films. Swirl Films’ Eric Tomosunas has produced and taped numerous stage plays and feature-length films for television and DVD including Love for Sale, A Mother’s Prayer and There’s a Stranger in My House and The Last Stand.
GMC (www.watchGMCtv.com), the fastest-growing network in television and the number one digital network in perceived value (source: BETA Research), is America’s favorite channel for uplifting music and family entertainment. Recently, The Parents Television Council™ awarded its Entertainment Seal of Approval™ to GMC for being “an authentic family-friendly cable network.” GMC is the only television network to receive the highly coveted honor in 2010.
GMC can be seen in nearly 48 million homes on various cable systems around the country, on DIRECTV on channel 338 and on Verizon FiOS on channel 224.