Hol­ly­wood stars make Daisy worth the drive

The Gold Coast Bulletin - Play Magazine - - SHOWS -

Roomers at­tended the Aus­tralian open­ing of Driv­ing Miss Daisy in Bris­bane on Satur­day night. The cream of Queens­land’s the­atre com­mu­nity con­verged at the Play­house The­atre to wel­come the play’s stars, Hol­ly­wood and Broad­way greats An­gela Lans­bury, 87, and James Earl Jones, 82. The award-win­ning ac­tors blew the au­di­ence away with their per­fect tim­ing, emo­tion and deft abil­ity to tell the story of two peo­ple from dif­fer­ent ends of the so­cial spec­trum who be­come good friends over 25 years. The play is set in Ge­or­gia, in the US, in the 1950s and ’60s, at the height of the Civil Rights Move­ment, and also stars Tony award win­ner Boyd Caines in the sym­pa­thetic and im­por­tant role of Miss Daisy’s son. For­get the fact Jones is renowned as the voice of Darth Vader and that Lans­bury first ap­peared on film with Charles Boyer in Gaslight – th­ese two are right up there with their con­tem­po­raries. The QPAC Play­house stage was used to great ef­fect – from the in-floor re­volve and use of sim­ple chairs for Miss Daisy’s car to the clever use of tracks for sim­ple fur­ni­ture pieces. The min­i­mal use of props and cos­tumes was a les­son for as­pir­ing de­sign­ers in how to work ef­fec­tively with­out clut­ter­ing the stage. Of course, it helps if you’re work­ing with ac­tors of Lans­bury and Jones’ cal­i­bre. Some of the di­a­logue was dif­fi­cult to hear from the bal­cony but this is sen­sa­tional, world-class the­atre on many lev­els. A must­see for au­di­ences of all ages, some tick­ets were still avail­able for per­for­mances this week­end at time of publi­ca­tion. Visit qpac.com.au for de­tails.

plays the Play­house The­atre, at QPAC, in Bris­bane, un­til Fe­bru­ary 24.

An­gela Lans­bury

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