All Rise! Aaron Sorkin’s adaption of To Kill A Mockingbird is a must see this winter. If you’ve read my other articles, you know Segerstrom has a kick-ass line up this year, and To Kill A Mockingbird brings a close to the 2022 calendar year in a monumental way while starting 2023 off with just the right appeal. This play runs from December 27, 2022 to January 8, 2023.
To Kill A Mockingbird was originally written by Harper Lee, who won a Pulitzer Prize for this acclaimed masterpiece. It is “the most successful American paly in Broadway history.” It has not played to a single empty seat” (60 Minutes).
When Aaron Sorkin adapted To Kill A Mockingbird for the theatrical stage back in 2018, he underwent a lot of adversities due to his interpretation of the character Atticus and the alleged deviation from the original book. You can be the judge on whether or not Sorkin was able to capture the real-life complexities and challenge you with questions related to America’s political debates, legal system failures and equality. It is directed by Bartlett Sher, a native of San Francisco, California.
Thank Harper Lee if you are a big fan of the Alt Rock called The Boo Radley’s and wondered the origin of their name, now you know.
To Kill A Mockingbird is a recollection of American injustice and racism told by a now grown woman, who was known as Scout during her childhood, and whose father, Atticus, was an Alabama attorney back in the 1930s. Scout relives the important lessons she learned from her father during one particular trial. Atticus took a case to defend Tom Robinson, an African American, who was accused of sexually assaulting a married, Caucasian woman (Mayella Ewell) though there is enough evidence to disprove Robinson’s guilt. If charged, Robinson will face death.
Scout has a brother, Jem, and a live in cook and housekeeper, Calpurnia. A young boy, Dill, who is visiting Maycomb, AL for the summer becomes friends with Scout and Jem. Together the three children engage in a bunch of shenanigans during the summer. It’s the case, lessons learned, and insight into injustice that is the center of attention in this play. The trial proves it was not Robinson who attacked Mrs. Ewell, but her husband, Bob Ewell; though the jury still convicts Robinson.
Segerstrom Center for the Arts
Costa Mesa, California
December 27, 2022 through January 8, 2023
To Kill A Mockingbird teaches us the aged old lessons that you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover; you must protect the innocent at all costs and stand up for what is right; be true to yourself; treat others equally; and be courageous even against all odds. It shows how the innocence of a young girl was destroyed after she had to witness the inequality and injustices of society through the actions of those in her community.
Richard Thomas does an outstanding job playing Atticus, giving the character newfound optimism with a bit of naivety. Melanie Moore gives Scout’s character the feistiness it deserves and she will captivate you as she sets up the story. Justin Mark, who plays Jem, commands the stage. Steven Lee Johnson, playing Dill, gives just the right amount of lightheartedness to the plot while remaining heartfelt and genuine. Other notable cast members include Jacqueline Williams as Calpurnia, Yaegel T. Welch as Tom Robinson, Joey Collins as Bob Ewell, and Arianna Stucki who plays Mayella Ewell. The actors voice inflections, accents, wit and overall demeanor on stage are impeccable.
Don’t let my hearsay persuade you about the remarkable cast; go gather your own evidence by way of a ticket and decide for yourself if I gave the cast members justice.
A few details to consider, the show runs about two and a half hours, tickets start at $ 29.