Best Luther: Tamba Giles in 'Luther' by Arena Players

In Randolph Smith’s “Luther,” which premiered at Arena Players in the spring, actor/vocalist Tamba Giles had the challenge of not only singing those inviolable Luther Vandross classics such as ‘Ain’t Nobody’ and ‘A House Is Not A Home,’ but he has to essentially carry the whole play, which focuses on Vandross in 2003, when he was in recovery from a stroke. On top of that, he had to capture private Vandross, who spent his whole career eliding rumors about his sexuality. It’s all deflection and change-the-subject moves, and Giles pulled comedy and a whole lot of sadness out of these scenes.

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