Carrie Watts wants to visit home.
LaTasha Price is doing all she can to help.
What’s happening is this: Price is playing the character Carrie Watts in the Macon Little Theatre’s production of Horton Foote’s “The Trip to Bountiful.”
“I think Carrie Watts is really after what Bountiful signifies to her,” Price said. “It was her home, but I think it signifies dignity, peace and freedom. When she was young she was in charge of her life, made her own decisions and had the respect of her peers in Bountiful. Now that she’s grown old she’s had to leave Bountiful and move into a cramped apartment with her son and daughter-in-law. Now she’s being told what to do and is restricted in her space. Against her son and daughter-in-law’s wishes, she wants more than anything to get back to Bountiful.”
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Price said Watts is on a journey all people travel as they seek their heart’s desire.
“I approach each character I play with complete honor and respect,” Price said. “Although Carrie is an older person with a particular wish, she’s like any one of us with their heart’s desire. And we all have obstacles. There’s something in Carrie’s journey that transcends just going to Bountiful and it can speak to us.”
This is Price’s first performance with MLT. Though she’s acted professionally on both coasts, she said it’s been years since she’s actually been on stage in such a production. Getting the role of Carrie Watts came serendipitously and tapped her own heart’s desire.
“I dropped my daughter off at a workshop and was told auditions were that night,” she said. “They asked why didn’t I come back. I decided to and got the part. As acting is a first love for me, doing this is something of a homecoming. It fills a need.”
As well as a first effort for Price at MLT, the production is the directorial debut of Joseph Whidby there as well — but he’s no stranger to the company or directing. He acted and directed at Georgia College where he studied theater, was drama instructor at Griffin High School and has been involved with MLT for 11 years, where he is a board member.
“It’s been wonderful working with this cast and crew,” he said. “Casts tend to get along, joke and have fun on breaks. But this cast takes breaks and jokes while staying perfectly in character. It’s been a delight for me as director to watch and I think it’s added layers to what audiences will get in some very good performances.”
Contact Michael W. Pannell at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“THE TRIP TO BOUNTIFUL”
Where: Macon Little Theatre, 4220 Forsyth Road
When: 8 p.m. Oct. 13-14 and Oct. 18-21; 2:30 p.m. Oct. 15 and 22
Cost: $20 adults, $15 seniors 60 and older, $10 students to age 23
Information: 478-471-7529; www.maconlittletheatre.org