A spot-on tribute to the iconic Texas governor. - Austin CultureMap
Ann at IAC runs
Jun 9 through Jul 8
Saturdays at 2:30 and 7:30
Our brassy blue governor Ann Richards is brought to vivid life in a tour-de-force one woman show. Ann is an inspiring and hilarious new play that brings you face to face with a complex, colorful, and captivating personality bigger than the state from which she hailed. Come sit a spell with one of politics’ most unforgettable characters.
Ann Richards - Linda Kay Leonard*
*Member, Actors Equity Association
The New Yorker has called Holland Taylor “the first vaudeville Gentile we ever saw.” Her New York stage performances include Bess in Breakfast With Les and Bess, the original productions of Butley, opposite Alan Bates, and A.R. Gurney’s The Cocktail Hour. In Los Angeles she has performed in Kindertransport and in Yasmina Reza’s The Unexpected Man at the Geffen. She has worked extensively in film, appearing in Romancing the Stone, Jewel of the Nile, To Die For, Next Stop Wonderland, One Fine Day, George of the Jungle, The Truman Show, Keeping the Faith, Legally Blonde and Baby Mama, with Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. Nominated for an Emmy seven times, she won Best Supporting Actress in a Drama for the sexy judge Judge Roberta Kittleson on “The Practice.” Among her series starring roles: “The Powers That Be,” Norman Lear’s highly acclaimed political satire; “Bosom Buddies,” with Tom Hanks; and “Two and a Half Men,” with Jon Cryer and Ashton Kutcher. Holland was a dedicated student of Stella Adler, and has given talks about this great teacher. A Philadelphia native, she took a BA at Bennington College. In 2005 she became a student again, earning an MA from the University of Santa Monica, and in 2007, began work on this play. She will always be grateful to the Galveston Grand Opera’s Maureen Patton, who took an enormous “Ann Richards-sized” risk in launching its first run; to Kevin Bailey, our shepherd from the start; to Benjamin Endsley Klein for his promise to “make the vision flesh;” and to Bob Boyett, who read the play as a friend, and looked up from the page as its producer. Visit Holland's website. http://www.hollandtaylor.com
Foreword to the script:
My mother, Ann Richards, was larger than life -- passionate, funny, complicated, and determined to make her mark on the world.Her journey, from an only child born to hard-scrabble parents in Lakeview, Texas, to being the first woman elected in her own right as governor of Texas, had more than its share of ups and downs. Her personal story, along with her uncanny humor and plain-spoken truisms, captured the imagination of the public -- those who knew her and many more who felt like they did.
In Ann, Holland has mastered what many comedians, politicians, and writers have attempted for years – she found the voice of Ann Richards. Holland researched every word, speech, and interview that Ann Richards ever wrote or spoke. She became a living archive of Mom’s life. Holland’s writing and performance tells her story brilliantly -- as Mother would say, warts and all. There’s not a single word out of place. Books have been written, documentaries made, but nothing truly captures the life of my mother like Ann.
Mom loved sitting in a dark theater and being entertained and inspired. I’m grateful that Holland Taylor has done both with Ann. Through Holland’s work, Mom can continue to inspire young women and men, and as a result some may devote their lives to public service. She believed there was no higher calling, and nothing would have pleased her more.
- Cecile Richards