Thoughts from our
Dear Theatre Friends,
We are excited with the move of Peace Mountain Theatre Company to Bethesda, Maryland where our first production will be Alfred Uhry’s award winning play, DRIVING MISS DAISY. I am privileged to be directing this particular play, as it voices a need that I believe our country is crying out for.
DRIVING MISS DAISY began as a theatre production; a small, simple play, that tells the story of Miss Daisy Werthan, a feisty, Jewish Atlanta matron, and her Black chauffeur, Hoke Coleburn. Seemingly disparate people, we follow these two characters as they come to realize their similarities far outweigh their dissimilarities. Spanning the years 1948 through to 1972, Miss Daisy and Hoke experience together a prejudicial South with the bombing of Miss Daisy’s synagogue, segregation of African Americans, ageism, rich versus poor, Jew versus gentile. During the 1940s through 70s, neither the Jews nor the African Americans are accepted as part of the Southern culture. The beauty of Uhry’s play is that these issues are subtely addressed and slowly become apparent with each passing scene.
It is through Uhry’s brevity and suggestion of racial possibilities that DRIVING MISS DAISY becomes more than melodrama. Though first produced in 1987, Uhry’s play is as significant and important a statement today as then. There are ways for different groups to come together and still maintain their identity; trust and respect for one another is as important today as it was when the play was first produced.
This is not a play about kings and queens; it deals with ordinary people like you and me. Through DRIVING MISS DAISY, Uhry tells the story of two decent people, living during difficult times, managing to reach out to each other while maintaining their dignity and personal integrity.
I look forward to meeting and speaking with you at a performance of DRIVING MISS DAISY.
Laurie T. Freed, Artistic Director