Dot, Mattapan actresses lead the way in Winthrop show

This Wednesday, Alicia Zipp and Sonya Joyner will take the stage at Winthrop’s School of the Performing Arts for their roles as golf gods in Ralph Tufo’s production, “I’d Rather Be Lucky Than Good.” The musical, which runs from Oct. 10 to Oct. 21, follows the story of Lucky Lou and Meticulous Max as they embark on a life-changing eighteen holes. Along the way the duo encounters golf gods—two of whom are played by Zipp and Joyner—and examine the themes of friendship and aging through the context of golf.

Residents of Dorchester and Mattapan respectively, Zipp and Joyner have been active members of Boston’s arts and culture scene for decades. For Zipp, her involvement began early as a theater actor and a singer for rock bands such as The Seals and Ten Gallon Cat. In the mid-90’s Zipp got her Screen Actors Guild (SAG) card, but she moved away from full length plays following the birth of her son.

“Because I had a child I had essentially stopped doing full length plays in theater just because of the time commitment when you’re a parent,” Zipp said. “But I have been and continue to be involved in the Boston Public Schools, which is where my son did go to school.”

Zipp was involved “on the arts level,” as the president of Friends of the Arts, and she continues her involvement more focused on the environment and sustainability as a member of the steering committee for the Friends of the Boston School Year. Zipp also works as a regular reader for the organization Playwright’s Platform, which is how Tufo found her and asked Zipp to audition. She immediately agreed, eager for the opportunity to return to full length theater pieces.

“The great thing about doing a piece like this is that there is a long rehearsal period, so you do get a chance to really get into your part and bond with the rest of the cast and you know so forth,” she said.

Zipp also remains excited about performing near her own Dorchester community—a vibrant group that she loves. “One of the reasons that I love living in Dorchester is that it is such a diverse place. And so I think that if more places were more diverse, people would get along a lot better.”

Joyner, a Mattapan resident who has worked with Tufo in the past, has most recently been working through Red Sage Stories, a theater and arts group focused on creating social change. After performing on stages farther from her own community, Joyner explained that “it’s really nice to be able to do something close to home.”

“It’s always nice to look in the audience and see a face you know, and to know that there is somebody there supporting you,” she said.
Joyner also noted this musical contains the perfect mix of humor and reflection, providing attendees with a much-needed escape.

“It’s something that’s light-hearted, Joyner said. “So many things are so deep, and thought-provoking, and [in this work] there are still issues, but it’s in a comedic way, so it’s a nice breather for people to come and see a show and just be able to just enjoy it and not have to think about it, to not have to bring up issues. So that’s nice. And even if it’s aging it’s still done in a humorous way. It’s just nice, and lighthearted, and friendly.”

Tickets ($20) for “I’d Rather Be Lucky Than Good” can be purchased at the door at the night of the performances: Oct. 12, 13, 19 and 20 at 7:30 p.m. and Oct. 21 at 5:00 p.m. On-line purchases ($15) are available at Type in the name of the play in their search box.