One of the biggest projects in our final year of MFA training is the creation and performance of a one-person show. These shows are meant to be entirely self-generated; we write, direct, and perform them ourselves, with only occasional feedback from our faculty mentors. These shows are meant to be, in part, encapsulations of our aesthetics as theater makers – our solo shows are supposed to represent who we are, what we care about, and what sorts of stories and theater pieces we find most exciting. It's a pretty enormous undertaking, and it feels deeply personal. After months of researching, writing, and rehearsing, I recently performed my solo show, entitled "Eulalia: A Bedtime Story".
"Eulalia" tells the true story of the Infanta Eulalia, a Princess of Spain who hated the constraints of royal life and who ultimately left the Royal Family in order to live as a private person. In doing so, however, she had to leave her children – who were both entrenched in the Spanish court – behind. "Eulalia: A Bedtime Story" takes place the night before Eulalia leaves the court for good, when Eulalia enters her children's nursery to tell them a bedtime story. Told through toys, puppets, and fairy-tale tropes, Eulalia unfolds the tragic story of her life – her deep desire to be free, the smothering of her independence and intelligence, the death of her beloved brother – and realizes that she needs to write a new ending to her story.
Creating this piece was one of the hardest things I've ever done, but I struggle to think of a project I'm more proud of, or that was more rewarding to perform. I'm hoping to continue this project's life after grad school – stay tuned!