OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY

Pulitzer-winning play ‘How I Learned to Drive’ opens Feb. 13

02/10/2014

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Oregon State University Theatre’s production of the Pulitzer Prize-winning play “How I Learned to Drive” will show Feb. 13-15 and Feb. 21-22 beginning at 7:30 p.m. on the Withycombe Hall main stage.

A matinee performance will begin at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 23 – also at the Withycombe Hall main stage, which is located at 30th and Campus Way in Corvallis.

The powerful exploration of abuse and manipulation blends playwright Paula Vogel’s characteristic wit with raw emotion as she depicts the story of Li’l Bit, a young girl from rural Maryland. Set in the 1960s, Li’l Bit grows up under the shadow of sexual abuse at the hands of her Uncle Peck. The play explores themes of power and control.

“This is a drama about obsession which some compare to Nabokov’s ‘Lolita,’ ” said director Charlotte Headrick, a theater arts professor at OSU.  “But unlike ‘Lolita,’ Vogel has filled the play with sharp, biting humor, which makes the drama all the more powerful.”

OSU student Erin Wallerstein portrays Li’l Bit and Corvallis resident Charles Prince plays Uncle Peck in the production. OSU students Alex Reis, Elise Barberis and Annie Parham are featured as the “Greek Chorus,” and play multiple roles conjured from Li’l Bit’s memories.

The Friday evening performances will include post-show discussions that are open to the public.

The play contains subject matter that is not suitable for children, Headrick said.

Tickets are $12, $10 for seniors, $8 for youth/students and $5 for OSU students. They are available for purchase through the OSU Theatre Box Office at 541-737-2784 or online at http://www.oregonstate.edu/dept/theatre

College of Liberal Arts

About the OSU College of Liberal Arts: The College of Liberal Arts includes the fine and performing arts, humanities and social sciences, making it one of the largest and most diverse colleges at OSU. The college's research and instructional faculty members contribute to the education of all university students and provide national and international leadership, creativity and scholarship in their academic disciplines.