How I Learned to Drive

By Paula Vogel

Directed by Michael Stalsberg

The Story: How I Learned to Drive is a wildly funny, surprising, and devastating tale of survival as seen through the lens of a troubling relationship between a young girl and an older man. It is the story of a woman who learns the rules of the road and life from behind the wheel. In spite of the serious nature of the story line, there are many comical elements of the play, which avoids the expected condemnation of this situation to look at the basic humanity that binds these two characters. The show uses innovative staging techniques to fade from one time frame to another and one place to the next. Supporting Li'l Bit and Peck, the two main characters, are three other actors who form a “Greek Chorus” representing the other characters of their quirky, intimidating rural Maryland family.

How I Learned to Drive is noteworthy for the many awards that it won, including the 1998 Pulitzer Prize for drama. Its initial off-Broadway run lasted for fourteen months. In addition to the Pulitzer, the play also was awarded an Obie, a Drama Desk Award, a New York Drama Critics' Award, an Outer Circle Critics Award, and the Lucille Lortel Award.

About the director: Michael Stalsberg is the vice president of Stage One, Inc. and the technical director for the Janesville Performing Arts Center. Recent directing credits include: Stage One's Proof by David Auburn, Jonathan Larson's tick, tick... BOOM! and The Frogs by Stephen Sondheim, Burt Shevelove, and Nathan Lane for the Janesville Performing Arts Center. Area theatre affiliations include Janesville Presents!, Theatre Unlimited, Janesville Schools, The JPAC Radio Players, New Court Theatre, and JLT, to name a few.

Produced by Stage One Inc. at Janesville Performing Arts Center, 408 South Main Street, Janesville

Performances: October 11-21, 2012

Performance Times: Oct. 11, 12, 13, 19, and 20 at 7:30PM; Oct 14 and 21 at 2:00PM

Ticket Prices: Thurs, Oct 11: Pay What You Can night! All other performances, $15 adults; all students: $8. Due to mature situations and adult language, this show is recommended for ages 16 and older.

Call 608-758-0297 for tickets or email for more information.

How you can help support MadStage! Radio theater page Submit show information to MadStage Information about performance venues Wisconsin playwrights and scripts page Theater humor page Win Free Tickets! Thanks to all those who've contributed to MadStage in the past year! About MadStage Theater and dance classes, workshops, teachers and schools Performance links Performance-related job and volunteer opportunities, plus internship listings Dance Groups featured on MadStage Theater groups featured on MadStage Performance Calendar Home


Auditions will be held on the following days:


What: Open auditions for Stage One Inc.'s production of How I Learned to Drive by Paula Vogel, directed by Michael Stalsberg.

Who: Three women and two men. Female lead: between 25 and 35 years old. Male lead: between 35 and 55. One male and two female actors (Age 18 –mid50s) to be cast as the "Greek chorus" who will play several parts each. All audition materials will be provided.

Where: The Janesville Performing Arts Center, 408 S Main St, Janesville, WI.

When: August 13 & 14 from 7 PM - 9 PM. If these are inconvenient times, contact Edie Baran, producer, at 608-931-5705 or email: