In adapting Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird for the stage, award-winning scribe Aaron Sorkin looked at the iconic characters of the recently named “best-loved” American novel with fresh eyes. In this exclusive series, Broadway.com talks with Sorkin and the talented performers who bring the citizens of Mayomb, Alabama to life every night at the Shubert Theatre.
DAKIN MATTHEWS AS JUDGE TAYLOR
CHARACTER: Judge Taylor, the small-town judge presiding over the trial of Tom Robinson, who is being represented by his friend Atticus Fitch.
ACTOR: Dakin Matthew is an actor, playwright, director and theater scholar with over 50 years of film, TV and stage credits. On Broadway, he’s been a dramaturg on productions of Shakespeare’s Henry IV, Julius Caesar and Macbeth and a performer in nine shows, including recent turns in the plays The Iceman Cometh and The Audience and the musicals Rocky and Waitress.
DAKIN MATTHEWS ON PLAYING JUDGE TAYLOR: “I love the fact that we’re doing a great American classic. I was a teacher before I was an actor. My kids have all been teachers at one time or another and I like the idea that plays help people learn things and remember things. I’ve done lots of plays that are just pure entertainment and I’ve enjoyed them immensely, but when a play has significance in culture, that I enjoy a lot more.”
AARON SORKIN ON DAKIN MATTHEWS: “I’ve loved Dakin Matthews in so many of his performances. Every time he comes on stage or on screen, I get happy. It’s no different in To Kill a Mockingbird.”
Photographed at the Shubert Theatre by Caitlin McNaney for Broadway.com