Thursday, December 16, 2010

Last on the New York Trip

It’s called saving the best for last. I’m still taking in Driving Miss Daisy. Sort of like you would a good wine. Well at least that’s what I’ve told because I don’t drink wine.

This is one of the best plays I’ve ever seen. Vanessa Redgrave and James Earl Jones were spectacular in their roles. The nuances they brought to the roles were amazing. The play starts in 1948 and ends in 1972. At the start Miss Daisy in 72 and Hoke is not much younger. The small mannerism both stars use to show that they are aging. The way they move about the stage. Their gestures and they way they talk all very gradually change over the course of the play to show they are getting older.

Two stand out scenes in the play. Miss Daisy thinks she is a 5th grade teacher again. She says to Hoke she has to find the children’s papers to grade and give back to them. She asks Hoke what he’s done with the papers. Hoke takes hold of both Miss Daisy’s arms and says very loudly there aren’t any papers. You’re not a teacher any more. If you say these things they’ll put you away. They sit down on a bench. Daisy turns to Hoke and says you’re my best friend. Hoke sort of shrugs it off. She then reaches over and grab holds of his hand and says it again you’re my best friend.

The other scene is when Miss Daisy is the nursing home. Hoke is at the house where her son, Boolie, who is packing up her possessions. Boolie says he’ll drive Hoke over to the home to see Miss Daisy. Hoke doesn’t like the fact he can’t drive any more. It makes it hard for him to see Miss Daisy. They go out to the home. Miss Daisy is in a wheel chair. From the way she carries herself and the way she talks, Miss Daisy has had a stroke. Boolie makes small talking until finally Miss Daisy says Hoke came to see her. Hoke then feeds Miss Daisy the pumpkin pie she has.

The play ends there.

They received a standing ovation. They deserved it. At the end as the audience was leaving I thought what a privilege to be able to see this play. Most of all to see two legends at the peak of their performing power.

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