Set in 1948 in Georgia ,Driving Miss Daisy tells the story of Daisy a southern american woman, difficult racist and stern. After a nasty accident where she nearly destroys her car , her son insists that she stop driving. He goes about recruiting a black driver to transport her to all her regular activities.
She is extremely hesitant and for the first week tells her newly employed driver Hoke to sit in the kitchen and do nothing.
Being a proud man he insists on doing some work , tending to daisy’s flowers. But eventually she comes around and he drives her to the piggly wiggly supermarket the first of many journeys they make together literally and figuratively.
As the Journey continue the bond between Miss Daisy and Hoke continue to grow. Later in the play even Daisies synagogue is fire bombed. This even brings about an epiphany in Daisy where she can now see and understand the struggle the black people have endured . The play takes place over 25 odd year period. The enduring friendship and change in the protagonists in the way they come to empathise and appreciate each other is what kept things interesting.
Seeing two screen legends perform this play was in one word incredible. I felt I was viewing an absolute tour deforce of acting. Angela Lansbury draws special praise here as her ageing from a loud mouth difficult woman into a defenceless vulnerable old woman was so subtle but totally believable. James Earl Jones was all class playing the sensitive Hoke . He plays of Angela beautifully and they have an incredible chemistry that cant be faked. Lastly Boyd Gaines not such a well known name in Australia. On broadway he is a stage vetran with many awards. He plays Miss Daisy’s son ,his part is what knits the piece together. The characters arguments with his mother about stopping driving were very funny and touching at the same time. His character I felt adored his mother but she also drove him crazy to .
All in all Driving Miss Daisy is a tour de force of acting great dialogue and fantastic writing. The staging was simple but effective . I took my mother for mothers day we were both huge fans of Angela Lansbury we were enthralled and very enriched by the experience.
A true 5 Star occasion.