Centerstage Debuts Iconic GUESS WHO'S COMING TO DINNER
Centerstage Theatre Company will premiere the stage adaptation of the Academy Award winning Best Picture film classic Guess Who's Coming toDinner? by Todd Kreidler and based on the screenplay by William Rose and runs Feb. 15-24 at Winfree Bryant Middle School Auditorium 1213 Leeville Pike in Lebanon.
Many film buffs and fans will remember the 1967 Stanley Kramer movie which starred Katherine Hepburn, Spencer Tracy and Sidney Poitier in the roles they made iconic for big screen. And revolves around liberal San Francisco couple Matt and Christina Drayton as they meet their 23-year-old daughter Joanna's African American fiancé, Dr. John Prentice Jr. for the first time.
Directed by Centerstage's Artistic Director Mitchell Vantrease, the back drop of the play takes in the same year as interracial marriage is about to be voted into law by the United States Supreme Court. Blindsided by their daughter's whirlwind romance and fearful for the future, Matt and Christina come to quickly realize the difference between supporting a mixed-race couple in your newspaper and welcoming one into the family - especially in 1967. But they soon find out they're not the only ones against the marriage as John and Joanna make it to the altar.
"I'm very excited about audiences seeing a live stage version of the show and always felt for years this would make a great play. All of the iconicmoments from the film are there, plus some things written specifically for theater and it really fleshes out some of the minor characters," said Vantrease. "And the themes in the story still resonant today even though our country has changed in 52 years, but we still have so much more progress to go."
Kreidler adapted the iconic Guess Who's Coming to Dinner into a widely produced stage play at several regional professional companies across the country and now it's been made available to even more theaters. In addition to this work, the playwright has worked with August Wilson in theaters across the country, developing his final three plays for Broadway and he wrote the book to the Tupac musical Holler If Ya Hear Me, which ran on Broadway as well.
Centerstage's cast stars Craig Hartline as Matt Drayton; Trin Blakely as Christina Drayton; Harold Lercius as Dr. John Prentice Jr.; McKenzie Sewell as Joanna "Joey" Drayton; Elliott Robinson as John Prentice Sr.; Jacqueline Waddy-Jones as Mary Prentice; Kristi Matthews as Maltida "Tillie" Binks; Larry Rhodes as Monsignor Ryan and Leslie Barrett as Hilary St. George.
Performances of Guess Who's Coming to Dinner are February 15, 16, 22 and 23 at 7:30 p.m. and on February 17 and 24 at 2 p.m. in Winfree Bryant Middle School Auditorium, 1213 Leeville Pike, Lebanon. Tickets are $15, general admission and $12 for students and seniors on www.brownpapertickets.comor at Iddy & Oscar's on the Lebanon Square (Call 615-917-5975) or at the door one hour prior to showtime.