Pulitzer prize-winning ‘Driving Miss Daisy’ at MTC MainStage

Music Theatre of Connecticut MainStage, Fairfield County’s award-winning professional theatre company, continues its season with Driving Miss Daisy, the Pulitzer prize-winning play by Alfred Uhry. Performances are Jan. 30-Feb. 22, Fridays, at 8, Saturdays, at 4 and 8, and Sundays, at 2, at The Melissa & Doug Theatre at The New MTC, 509 Westport Avenue (behind the Jones New York and Nine West Outlet) in Norwalk. Tickets range from $25-$50 ($5 discount for seniors/students) and are available by calling 203-454-3883 or visiting musictheatreofct.com.

Driving Miss Daisy begins in 1948 when Daisy Werthan, a 72-year-old Jewish widow living in Atlanta, is deemed too old to drive. Her son Boolie hires Hoke Coleburn, an African American, to serve as her chauffeur. What begins as a troubled and hostile pairing soon blossoms into a profound, life-altering friendship that transcends all the societal boundaries placed between them. Their relationship, spanning a 25 year period, is a reflection of critical changes in American society. Daisy and Hoke deal with anti-Semitism, racism, and class differences while their bond grows ever stronger. Full of wit and charm, Miss Daisy and Hoke take audiences on an unforgettable journey of friendship told with humor, warmth and beauty; as it gently raises questions about serious issues including aging and bigotry. Critics call the play “funny, touching, totally irresistible comedy…a delight.”

The play, written by Alfred Uhry, premiered in 1987 Off-Broadway at Playwrights Horizons. Two years later the play was made into a film with Morgan Freeman and Jessica Tandy. Alfred Uhry received an Academy award for Best Adapted Screenplay while the film was awarded Best Picture. Driving Miss Daisy was Uhry’s first play and was followed by The Last Night of Ballyhoo and “Parade,” both Tony award-winners. He also wrote the book for the Broadway musical LoveMusik.

MTC’s professional Equity cast includes Rebecca Hoodwin as Daisy. Hoodwin’s credits include Golde in over a dozen productions of Fiddler on the Roof, including tours with Theodore Bikel, Harvey Fierstein and as Yente with Topol. Other credits include “The Pajama Game” with Hal Linden, Lorelei with Carol Channing and Camelot with Richard Harris and Rock Hudson. Television credits include Nurse Jackie and As the World Turns. Daisy’s driver Hoke will be played by Lorenzo Scott whose credits include “Dutchman” for Classical Theatre of Harlem, Much Ado About Nothing and Fences at New Harmony Theatre. Commercials include American Express, Cablevision, Chase and Walmart, and Scott is also the voice for the station identification for PBS/Channel 13. Rounding out the cast as Daisy’s son Boolie is Fairfield resident Michael Boland who appeared on Broadway in An Enemy of the People, on tour with Twelve Angry Men and West Side Story, and as part of the Drama Desk Award-winning ensemble of the Off-Broadway epic Orphans Home Cycle. Television and film credits include Person of Interest, Zero Hour, Rubicon, and star of the indie feature Bobby Dogs.

Driving Miss Daisy is directed by MTC co-founder and Executive Artistic Director Kevin Connors. The design team includes set design by David Huevelman, lighting design by Tyler First and costumes designed by Diane Vanderkroef. The production is stage managed by Jim Schilling.

MTC is proud to partner again this season with Rizzuto’s Wood-Fired Kitchen and Bar of Westport, offering a special discount to “Driving Miss Daisy” ticket holders. See the MTC website at musictheatreofct.com for details.

Mike Boland, Lorenzo Scott and Rebecca Hoodwin.

Mike Boland, Lorenzo Scott and Rebecca Hoodwin.

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