Matt and Christina Drayton are a progressive couple living in San Francisco. It is 1967 when their daughter Joanna arrives home unexpectedly with her fiancé, Dr. John Prentice, an African American doctor 11 years her senior. They’re in love and they want the Draytons’ blessing for their marriage – today. Blindsided by their daughter’s whirlwind romance and fearful for her future, Matt and Christina quickly come to realize the difference between reading about and supporting a mixed-race couple in your newspaper and welcoming one into your family. It’s not long before a multi-family clash of racial and generational difference erupts. At the end of the day, will love prevail?
Based on the iconic film, (screenplay by William Rose, directed by Timothy Bond), this thought-provoking comedy classic is a witty and insightful reflection on two families confronted by their prejudices.
Director: Katheryn Markey
Stage Manager: James Joseph Clark*
Scenic Designer: Daniel Nischan
Lighting Designer: Marcus Abbott
Sound Designer: Tate Burmeister
Costume Designer: Liz Saylor
* member of Actors Equity
The film, “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner”, is a 1967 American comedy-drama film starring Spencer Tracy, Sidney Poitier, and Katharine Hepburn, and features Hepburn’s niece Katharine Houghton.
The film was one of the few to depict an interracial marriage in a positive light, as interracial marriage historically had been illegal in most states of the US, and still was illegal in 17 states until 12 June 1967, six months before the film was released. The film’s Oscar-nominated score was composed by Frank De Vol.
The film is notable for being the ninth and final on-screen pairing of Tracy and Hepburn, with filming ending just 17 days before Tracy’s death. Hepburn never saw the completed film, saying the memories of Tracy were too painful. The film was released in December 1967, six months after his death. In 2017, the film was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant”.
Join us for an opening night reception following the 8:00pm performance on Friday, April 26th. Light refreshments will be served.
Check back here for press releases, photos and video clips!
Looking for something to do? Ivoryton Playhouse has been voted best place to see live theatre by readers of The Shoreline Times for three years in a row. Come to Essex and visit our historic, professional theatre – a Connecticut treasure!