Pulitzer Prize-Winning Play How I Learned to Drive from Stone Soup Theatre
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The last date listed for How I Learned to Drive was Sunday February 27, 2011 / 4:00pm.
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Quotes & Highlights
How I Learned to Drive won the Pulitzer Prize in 1998, as well as Obie, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle and New York Drama Critics awards.
Written by Paula Vogel
Featuring Maureen Miko, Zachariah Robinson, Kelli Mohrbacher, Jaeger Weatherby and Jaryl Draper
Insightful. Outrageous. Funny. Disturbing. The metaphor of driving in this 1998 Pulitzer Prize-winning play offers a remarkably candid view of the strained relationship between a young woman nicknamed Li’l Bit and her Uncle Peck. Innovative staging chronicles the passage of time and place over 30 years as audiences are reminded of the mysterious power of forgiveness and the humanity that binds, especially in families.
Using the metaphor of driving, taboo issues of exploitation are brought to light, often with humor, suspending the piece between the categories of drama and comedy.
Vogel uses the classic Greek device of a chorus composed of a male, a female, and a teenager to fulfill a variety of roles in the play. As well as observing and commenting on the action, they assume roles in various scenes, such as individual family members and high school students. The two main characters, Li’l Bit and Peck, are observed and analyzed by the Greek chorus to provide a catharsis for the audience, as in the Greek choral tradition. When the adult Li’l Bit drives off at the end of the play, once more able to believe in forgiveness and family, the catharsis for both Li’l Bit and the audience is complete.
Moreover, Vogel, like the ancient Greek playwrights, warns the audience of its own fallibility. She does not ignore omens that presage moral disaster but meets them head on. In dramatizing the different perspectives of Li’l Bit and Peck, by extension she dramatizes those of every member of the audience and its larger society.