My name is Steve and on behalf of the creative team (Ashley Schalow/playwright, Anna Richardson/Actress, Steve Cooper/director/designer) behind Bold Grace, the voyages of the pirate O’Malley, I want to tell you all how excited we are to be able to bring this show to Woodinville Rep.
Ashley wrote this show while still in college, and in April 2011 she entered it into Burien Little Theatre’s Bill and Peggy Hunt Playwrights Festival, consequently winning first place in the one act category. The show was fully produced during the second half of the festival.
My involvement with the show started as soon as I saw the title. I had read about the character of Grace O’Malley previously and also thought what a great subject for a play she would be. As soon as I saw that BLT had picked a play about this woman, I lobbied pretty hard to direct it. Grace is very fascinating character.
As originally written, the show was a long one act, clocking in at about 1 ½ hours. However, there was something magical about watching Anna portray Grace O’Malley up there all by herself. There is something about telling a story and connecting with an audience that has a very strong presence in Ashley’s script. Once the festival was over, the three of us sat down and talked about ways to improve the script. The play was split into two acts, some lines were changed and some subjects were fleshed out a bit more. We ran this new version down in Auburn and again at BLT and audiences really loved it.
While I think the writing is very solid, I have to say that watching Anna Richardson play Grace is a sheer joy. You can tell she also enjoys the script very much and loves to play Grace as much as we all love to watch her.
For my part, I love everything about this show. I hope that you will all come out and watch a very talented actress work with a very good script about a wonderfully interesting true life historical woman.