I Know I've Been Changed

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I Know I've Been Changed
Written by Tyler Perry
Characters Joe played by Tyler Perry
Tyler Perry website Official site

I Know I've Been Changed was the first major successful play from famed playwright Tyler Perry. The play focuses on critical issues including child abuse and rape and how they are overcome by a strong belief in God.

Soul musician Ryan Shaw got his start performing in this play in 1998. The play received its first staging in Atlanta in 1992.[1] The play toured from 1998 to 2000.[2]

Grammy award winning vocalist Ann Nesby of the musical and instrumental group Sounds of Blackness played a supporting role in this play/production.


This hard-hitting play used comedy and drama to tell a story of two adult survivors of child abuse who became the people that their abusive mother said they would be. It is also the story of how they overcame the power of God with a shocking twist at the end. Mary (Shirley Marie Graham), the lead character, married and had two children before she had the opportunity to become an adult herself. Emotionally and spiritually irresponsible, she sought the succor of drugs to alleviate the pressure of rearing her children. This drug abuse manifests itself in verbal, emotional and physical abuse toward her children. She is unable to see the beauty of her own children, and addicted to drugs, unable to alter the destructive path she has embarked upon. Compounding an already dysfunctional family situation, the husband is abusive to his wife and children as well, molesting his older son, Sam (Ryan Shaw), which results in a dramatic plot twist later in the play. Fanny (Ann Nesby), is a mother divorcing her husband after becoming a famous singer. In a bold move to pursue her dreams she had to leave her daughter Ellen (Jamecia Bennett), to be raised by her husband, Joe (Tyler Perry).

Cast & Musical numbers[edit]

Musical Numbers from The Gospel Play[edit]

All songs written and produced by Tyler Perry and Elvin D. Ross.

  • "I Know I've Been Changed"
  • "Don't Be Discouraged"
  • "More Than Just a Sin"
  • "I Should Have Been There"
  • "She's Gonna Live"
  • "Gotta Move Blues"
  • "If Knew What To Do"
  • "Old Time Way"
  • "He Will Take Away All Your Pain"


  • In this play Tyler Perry portrays the character "Joe", a character still being portrayed by Tyler Perry in his movies. The character is revealed in later works to be the brother of Madea (Tyler Perry's most famous character). This play is not available on DVD.