Steel Magnolias showing at Norton Center Feb. 28

Published 7:33 pm Tuesday, February 19, 2019


News release

At turns both laugh-out-loud funny and deeply touching, the L.A. Theatre Works production of “Steel Magnolias” is boldly sweeping its way into the Norton Center on Feb. 28.  Revealing the strength of the human condition and our shared need for companionship, the play has had multiple successful New York runs and performances staged around the globe.

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“The movie, ‘Steel Magnolias,’ adapted from the play of the same name, was one of those full-spectrum stories that has stuck with me for decades,” said Steve Hoffman, Norton Center executive director. “Through all of its truly funny banter, interspersed with dramatic intensity, the story made me realize the importance of family and friends. Like any great story of the human condition, this play knows how to keep the audience’s attention with thought provoking entertainment.”

Within the walls of Truvy’s beauty shop, set in the deep Bayou of Louisiana, six strong women’s lives increasingly hinge on the existence of one another. Together, they absorb the passing seasons, just like the weathered wooden structure of the salon “home” that they share.

Under the leadership of Producing Director Susan Albert Loewenberg, L.A. Theatre Works (LATW) has been the foremost public radio theater company in the United States for more than 30 years. LATW brings the finest recorded theatrical performances into millions of homes, broadcasting weekly in America on public radio stations and daily in China on the Radio Beijing Network; streaming online at; and airing on many other international outlets, including the BBC.

The company last performed at the Norton Center in 2012, with their well-received production of “The Rivalry.”

The production’s cast have film, television and theater credits that are as impressive as they are recognizable. Elisa Bocanegra appeared in “Girlfight,” “Spun Undeclared,” and “Gilmore Girls,” and founded Hero Theatre with the help of her mentor, Olympia Dukakis.  Shannon Holt has appeared in productions at the Actors Theatre of Louisville and Pasadena Playhouse, and in the hit TV shows “Seinfeld” and “ER.” Patti Yasutake debuted in Ron Howard’s film, “Gung Ho,” and then the TV series, co-starring with Scott Bakula. She is best known as Nurse Alyssa Ogawa from the “Star Trek: The Next Generation” films and series and can be seen in “Pretty Little Liars,” “Bones,” “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Blindspot,” “Drop Dead Gorgeous,” and “NCIS: Los Angeles.” In addition to acting, Monica McSwain has danced with Debbie Allen, Michael Jackson, and the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater.

Steel Magnolias will open at Centre College’s Norton Center for the Arts on Thursday, Feb. 28, at 7:30 PM in Newlin Hall. Tickets, priced at $49, $37 and $27, are available at or by calling the box office at 1-877-HIT-SHOW.

A free Creative Conversation, titled “Where Women Find Community,” will be held prior to the show from 6:30 to 7:15 p.m. in the Grand Foyer. The casual discussion will feature a panelist of LATW cast and community members and is open to the public.