America’s most unstoppable small-cast regional hit, How I Learned to Drive, makes its Chicago premiere Feb. 3 at the Northlight Theatre in Skokie, IL. Paula Vogel’s tender, disturbing Off-Broadway play about a girl’s coming of age -- and her warm but dark relationship with her uncle, who gives her driving lessons -- won the 1998 Pulitzer Prize for Drama and has gone on to be the most-produced play of the current regional theatre season.
The Northlight production, which will feature a multimedia design of video images and projected photos by scenic designer Todd Rosenthal, opens Feb. 10 after previews and continues to March 7.
Mariann Mayberry and Scott Jaeck have been cast in the lead roles of Li’l Bit and Uncle Peck. Maurice Ralston, Sarah Watson and Natalie West are also featured.
Susan V. Booth, director of new play development at Chicago’s Goodman Theatre, directs. Linda Roethke is costume designer, Joe Cerqua is sound designer.
Northlight is co-producing with Atlanta’s Alliance Theatre, where it will transfer before moving on to City Stage Theatre in Springfield, MA.
In New York, Vogel’s The Mineola Twins, following the history of twins (one good, on evil, both played by Swoosie Kurtz) is in previews at the Roundabout Theatre. It opens Feb. 18. Vogel also wrote The Baltimore Waltz and other plays.
Northlight Theatre is at 9501 Skokie Blvd. in Skokie. Performances run through March 7. Tickets are $23-$36. For information, call (847) 673-6300.
Ahead on the Northlight season:
The Chicago premiere of David Mamet’s The Old Neighborhood, March 17-April 24.
The Chicago premiere of Martin McDonagh’s The Cripple of Inishmaan, April 28-May 30.
-- By Kenneth Jones and Sean McGrath