Hickory Group Produces Play For "Rosco P. Coltrane" - myfoxcarolinas.com

Hickory Group Produces Play For "Rosco P. Coltrane"

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James Best, the man who played legendary sheriff Rosco P. Coltrane in “The Dukes of Hazzard,” is preparing to take the stage with the Hickory Community Theatre (HCT). He is starring in “On Golden Pond,” a play he asked the HCT to produce.

“Theatre has always been my first love and will be my last,” said James Best. “We moved to Hickory and I came down and saw a production in this theater. I actually compare it to some of the shows I have seen in New York, if not surpassing them. They have such a wonderful collection of talent here.”

Best stars as Norman Thayer and his wife, Dorothy, is one of the main performers.

“My wife is playing my daughter,” said Best. “She claims I am Norman from the play. It’s a wonderful character. I do have a lot of the characteristics that Norman has.”

Dorothy Best commented, “Jimmy being such a charming and loving and funny person, he has found Norman’s humanity. But he has his crotchety moments. But he’s certainly not Rosco. He’s funny, but he’s nothing like Rosco, really.”

Developing characters is something James Best is used to doing. Take the moment he auditioned for the Coltrane character.

“I did what I did with my little girls when they were little,” said Best. “I’d say, ‘I’m gonna get you, you little rascal.’ I did that in the script when I went to meet the producers and writers. I was the first one they signed. We’re all children at heart, so Roscoe is a child at heart who likes ‘Hot Pursuit.’”

In all, James Best has appeared in more than 600 television shows and nearly 80 movies.

“Everyday is an exciting experience for me,” said Best. “Because I’m in God’s waiting room. I thank God every day for such a long and wonderful career. What a blessing this old country boy has had.”

His co-star, veteran Hollywood and Hickory actor Norma Frank, expects Best’s “Hazzard” fans to be part of the “On Golden Pond” audience.

“He is immensely popular in this area, and his fans come to see him,” said Frank. “They are delighted to see him. And he will bring out all his fans, and they are by the score.”

So, whether you are in a “General Lee” or a squad car, the Hickory Community Theatre welcomes you to its next performance. “On Golden Pond” runs Feb. 28 through March 16.

Visit the Hickory Theatre website for more information.

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