Check out ‘Becky’s New Car’

Posted 1/23/12

At some point, most of us are tempted to flee our day-to-day life — at least in our imagination. Local actress Michelle Grimes plays Becky Foster …

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Check out ‘Becky’s New Car’


At some point, most of us are tempted to flee our day-to-day life — at least in our imagination. Local actress Michelle Grimes plays Becky Foster who does just that in “Becky’s New Car,” a comedy written in 2007 by Steven Dietz.

“Becky’s New Car” is playing at Vintage Theatre, 2119 E. 17th Ave. through Feb. 19. Grimes, who lives in Centennial, teaches fourth grade at Clayton Elementary School in Englewood, where she once lived and helped with the Englewood summer drama programs.

The Dietz play was written as a 50th birthday gift from her husband for a Seattle woman active in the theater community. She was delighted and the couple sat in on rehearsals as the play was readied for performance, which pleased the playwright.

Becky works for a car dealership and is in a rather humdrum marriage when a widowed millionaire stumbles into the dealership. Becky’s life changes significantly, with all sorts of complications.

The actress has been performing at various theaters in the metro area while teaching in schools, at the Lakewood Cultural Center, at ACC’s program for home-schooled children and more.

“My place in life is really teaching,” she said.

Grimes said that when she was a little girl, her parents gave her ballet lessons, ice skating lessons and other performance training.

“They were great supporters,” she said.

She grew up performing and became a teacher, eventually receiving a masters in arts and education. “I incorporate art into my lesson plans,” she said.

She has been involved with the Vintage Theatre Company for a number of years and serves on its board of directors. She appeared there last season in the ambitious and well produced “Angels in America,” which was presented in two parts.

The new role is lighter but “line heavy,” she said, a bit nervously as opening night draws near.

At Clayton, she is developing a theater program, the Clayton Theatre Troupe, complete with auditions and corporate sponsors, where fourth-graders and fifth-graders will perform a full show this spring. She has written an original script for it and hopes eventually to write and develop a children’s movie, “The Art of Changing Mae-Mae.”

The mother of three adults, Grimes says she doesn’t schedule herself to perform in the summer, because she also loves to travel.

Dietz, a Colorado native and University of Northern Colorado graduate (1980), is one of America’s 10 most produced playwrights.

He teaches at the University of Texas but heads back with his family to Seattle in the summer, where he lived and worked for years and is active in the theater community. Many of his plays have a theme of personal betrayal and deception.

Sarah Mae Johnson is director. In addition to Grimes, the cast includes Jim Hunt, Andy Anderson, Brian Kusic, Charlie Wingerter, Mallory Vining and Jan Cleveland.

“Becky’s New Car” plays at 7:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays; 2:30 p.m. Sundays. Tickets: $25 ($20 advance) Fridays, Saturdays; $21 ($18 advance) Sundays. 303-839-1361,


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