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Posts tagged ‘The Divine Madness of Isabella’

Dear World,

Packing up for load-in

Today we wrapped our final rehearsal before we load-in our set and props to our Fringe space.  A whole new adventure awaits with tech and performances, and I can’t wait.

A few rehearsals back, the thought of today terrified me.  Would we be ready? Would I be ready? Would I be able to make this beast of a play work?  Had I written something I couldn’t perform?  My director, after last Saturday’s run through, quoted my own play back at me: “Pig shit.”  Then he gave me page after page of notes.

Something amazing began to happen, though, in this last week.  I remembered why I wrote this play.

Several years ago I asked myself what it was I wanted to say to the world.  At first, I couldn’t think of a thing. (And for folks who know me that’s a real shocker because I have an opinion on everything.) As an actor, you interpret other people’s words, you facilitate another person’s vision, you wear other people’s costumes as you walk on other people’s sets under other people’s lights.  And I have always enjoyed that collaboration immensely.

But it bothered me that I didn’t have anything of my own to say.

As I began to work on The Divine Madness of Isabella, I still wasn’t sure what I had to say to the world. I wrote, and rewrote, and rewrote.  And rewrote some more.  Somewhere around Draft #27, I realized that although I was writing Isabella’s story, every choice I made in how to tell it was informed by what I wanted to say to the world.  And I did have something to say. I had lots to say.

That’s what I remembered this week.   The things I have to say to the world. I’m not going to tell them to you in this blog, you’ll have to see the show for that.  The show has started to take wing.  My director actually stopped taking notes (most of the time) and just watched.

I’m grateful to the Fringe Festival for giving all of us a chance to express our stories.  A healthy arts community needs a place for artists to grow, take risks, and find their voice. And creating a Festival for all of to come together is just amazing.

I stopped numbering the drafts of my script, by the way.  By the time I got to Draft #46, it was getting embarrassing.

Playing Nice in the Sandbox

Can I contribute too?

We are now about four weeks into rehearsals for The Divine Madness of Isabella. The show centers on Isabella Andreini, a 16th century actress of the commedia dell’Arte. Usually around the time I say that, I see people’s eyes glaze over. But the play is about many familiar things: making choices that disappoint our fathers, arguing with our spouses and BFFs, doing things that scare us because people depend on us, and that moment of inspiration when it all comes together. Read more

The Divine Madness of Isabella

How long can you walk the line between genius and insanity?

LA Weekly says “GO!”

“Gough recounts this epic story with disarming ease, robust humor and efficiency, and skillfully mimics over twenty characters. She also employs a dazzlingly attractive assortment of masks and puppets throughout.”
– LA Weekly

“Gough is wonderful throughout, keeping a frenetic, yet balanced, pace, all the while juggling the numerous props and character changes.”
– LA Theatre Review

“There is an appreciable amount of creativity and innovation that makes this more than the average one-person show.”
– pLAwriting in the city


“the production… is impeccable…”
-Backstage West

Coming this June to the Hollywood Fringe Festival!

Lovers. Poets. Zannis. Dukes. Madmen.

Enter the world of Isabella Andreini, greatest actress of the commedia dell’Arte.

Finding herself performing alone on a stage, Isabella is challenged to improvise a new scenario – the story of her life.  Isabella uses her unparalleled craft to tell her story and delve into the madness that fuels her art.  Using masks, puppets and sheer imagination, award-winning actress Wendy Gough brings to life some 20 + characters in a show that flies by at a breakneck pace.  Produced in association with Theatre Unleashed.

Written & Performed by Wendy Gough
Directed by Jeff Soroka



June 07, 3:15 PM
June 14, 7:15 PM
June 17, 4:15 PM
June 21, 9:00 PM
June 22, 9:00 PM
June 23, 9:00 PM
June 24, 2:15 PM




The Flight Theatre at the Complex
6476 Santa Monica Boulevard


Tickets will go on sale May 1st at the Hollywood Fringe Festival Website!

 Valet Parking will be available for evening performances.