Driving Miss Daisy
Georgia Ensemble Theatre
through March 17, 2019
and Conant Theater at Oglethorpe
June 28 through July 21
This current production of Alfred Uhry’s Pulitzer Prize winning play is really a delight. The cast of three players couldn’t be better. Jill Jane Clements once again plays Daisy, the widow with a very strong sense of what she wants and what she approves of. She has a slight problem in that at her advanced age her son, Boolie, doesn’t want her to drive any more; since she seems to run into things by accident.
And William S. Murphey comes back to reprise a role he has played for many years. He is the son, Boolie, who runs a very successful printing business; and he hires a black man to serve Miss Daisy as her driver. Oops! Daisy doesn’t think she needs nor wants a care giver, and they start off on a very difficult road to becoming friends for life.
And Rob Cleveland is back again as her driver, Hoke, who is happy to have the work, but would like to feel that he is doing something of value for the money that Boolie is paying him each week. He eventually gets to be appreciated.
We hear of other members of the family and if they seem a bit difficult in some ways, that isn’t unusual. After all, whose family is perfect? The play is derived form the real life personal experiences of the playwright who grew up in Atlanta. And it is set here with references to Virginia Highlands, Little 5 Points, and The Temple.
The crisis point is when Miss Daisy is heading to The Temple on the day in October 1958 that some miscreants set off dynamite at the entrance. And there is also the inclusion of the time when in 1965 Martin Luther King was honored by the UJA for his winning of the Nobel Prize.
But the story really is not about anti-Semitism, and discrimination in those bad days. It is more about how two people from vastly different backgrounds get to know and appreciate one another as human beings. Directed by Laurel Crowe, with a fairly simple set that works for Daisy’s home and Boolie’s office. It is a one act 90 minute show where everything works just perfectly. This is an evening full of laughter and one you can truly enjoy.
For performance times and tickets you can visit GET.org