Once again our friends over at DC Theatre Scene are running their second annual Getting Personal Feature. This is where they ask questions of the Helen Hayes Nominees and ask them about their roles/jobs, the shows they are nominated for and things that they found enjoyable about working on that show.
This year being our first double nominee year, I have asked permission to run both Gabi and Shirley's contributions to the Feature. Today Gabi tomorrow Shirley.
I would also like to add for as much love as both of these women throw Rorschach's way, it is returned 10 fold by the Company and 20 fold by the blogger.
If you want to read about numerous other nominees follow visit DC Theatre Scene with this LINK. Enjoy!
Gabriela Fernandez-Coffey, Outstanding Lead Actress
Gabby in References to Salvador Dali Make Me Hot
Well she has a great name. ;-) and is intensely alive in her dreams. We meet her full of doubt…alone. Still we know she is a fierce woman. She conjures people, animals, elements and planetary bodies….she counts them as her friends…sometimes enemies….always companions. She’s earthy, sexy, bold and wise. I love her very much.
In response to one of Rorschach’s blog questions asking which of the characters would win in an ultimate deathmatch (I love Rorschach), the playwright Jose Rivera responded that it would be Gabby. awww yeah. But really, who else could….she is fighting for life and love. She is fighting to maintain faith. and though we understand that she is facing the most formidable enemy… the shadow of death and war that have eclipsed the hearts of both her and her husband…we want to believe….like she does…that it is possible and necessary to leave the desert and find a way back to fertile soil.
Well almost the entire play is in her mind (possibly)…so that helps….I listened to the words. and understood how she talked to the moon. and looked across our cracked wood desert to her husband coming in from the darkness, and her cat crawling out into coyote wild unknowns. I watched as her young neighbor climbed back over to his side of the fence; and her friend the moon said his final goodbye. It was all there. All the actors, designers, Shirley [Serostsky, Director]..had brought to life Gabriela’s most intimate landscape. So I had it easy….i just had to listen and be in the world around me. and I understood her doubt…her questioning. The ground had shifted underneath her feet. Her sky had been blown apart.
Not a what…as much as a who surprised me. life is beautiful that way.
Benito’s final entrance. without a doubt. at the end we circle back and can begin again….maybe.
And also the top….walking onstage in darkness (semi-darkness on matinee days) while Scott took his lunar position on top of the refrigerator and the audience hushed awaiting…laying down on my back in the stillness of their hush and watching the stars in the shattered sky turn on….”fly me to the moon” begins to croon.
Performances in The Unmentionables and Solas Nua’s Made in China were fantastic…brave and fun. Andrew Price and Clay Steakley, as the brothers Dukes and Bones in Inkwell’s Underground, were something to behold …“We two is brothers till the lord calls us home.”
Wrapping up the incredible Stunning experience….stunning-stay no doubt. and looking forward to being home for awhile…having more time to develop some work with friends…play.