Cicely Tyson returning to Broadway in her dream role
Asked during interviews for Alex Cross in October if she would ever consider retirement, celebrated stage and screen actress Cicely Tyson, 78, revealed that for the past “five or six years,” she’s been holding out for one particular theater role before agreeing to close the curtain on her illustrious career.
“I have always had a desire to do a certain play. And I have said over and over and over again to my manager that once I do that, then I would retire. Well, I never expected it to happen, and oddly enough, I got the call,” Tyson told us. “So, it might happen next year. I won’t say.”
At the time, she refused to mention the name of the play or the dream role.
On Monday, however, it was finally announced that Tyson will return to Broadway for the first time in three decades as the lead in a new production of Horton Foote’s The Trip to Bountiful. Tyson will play the iconic character Carrie Watts, an elderly woman who yearns for a return trip to her small hometown of Bountiful, Tex., one last time, against the wishes of her overprotective son and daughter-in-law.
“To do the play and role justice, you need an actress of rare stature and command,” said director Michael Wilson in a press release. “Cicely Tyson has, over the span of a distinguished career, depicted iconic Americans engaged in immense struggle. I am thrilled that she is returning to the stage now to have her trip, to lead us all on a journey that promises to be unforgettable.”
Previews will begin on Easter Sunday, March 31, 2013 at the Stephen Sondheim Theatre. Opening night is scheduled for Tuesday, April 23, and there are plans for the show to run for 14 weeks.
In October, Tyson was firm in her belief that she would not reassess her decision to retire once her then-mystery stage run ends. In fact, she said at the time, “I know I won’t” reconsider.
She went on to credit “the universe” for allowing this role to finally land at her feet.