“DRIVING MISS DAISY” A STUDY IN AGING GRACEFULLY
Aging gracefully is an art. Being strong, independent, imaginative and a little feisty don’t hurt, especially if you are Miss Daisy Werthan of Atlanta, Georgia. In Alfred Uhry’s carefully crafted tale “Driving Miss Daisy,” he creates the gentle journey of a Southern lady as age begins to take its toll. The first sign of creeping years is the car accident that begins the play where, due to a misbehaving gear shift, a three week old automobile, a two car garage and a free-standing tool shed are demolished.
Ivoryton Playhouse is providing a tender, touching and bittersweet peek into the lives of Miss Daisy, a daunting Rebecca Hoodwin, and her son Boolie, a devoted Steven L. Barron, and the man, Hoke Coleburn, portrayed by a caring Rob Barnes, who is hired by Boolie to drive his mama when he and the insurance company deem her no longer fit to do so herself. Until Sunday, October 17, you are invited along on this sentimental and gentle waltz.
Initially, Miss Daisy will have none of Hoke’s attentiveness. She no more wants him to drive her for groceries to the Piggly Wiggly than she will allow him to plant a vegetable garden. But Hoke’s patient persistence finally pays off in six days, just the amount of time it took for the good Lord to create the world. Both were genuine miracles.
Over the decades of their relationship, Miss Daisy and Hoke, a prim and conservative white woman of the Jewish persuasion and a hard working and competent black man, become a most unlikely pair: devoted friends. Hoke helps the woman her son calls “a doodle,” with great affection, on a journey that involves far more than a weekly trip to the grocery store for food or to the temple for prayer. Lawrence Thelen directs this superb trio with a sensitive hand.
For tickets ($38, seniors $33, students $20, children $15), call the Ivoryton Playhouse, 103 Main Street, Ivoryton at 860-767-7318 or online at www.ivorytonplayhouse.org. Performances are 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Thursday at 7:30 p.m., Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m., with matinees Sunday at 2 p.m.
Be prepared for a smooth ride in Miss Daisy’s Packard, with a capable Hoke at the wheel, but don’t be surprised if there are a few bumps in the road of life.