From its inspired inception to the latest revealing revisions, Foster’s Love, Isadora remains a labor of love and passion for all involved.
According to Foster, the journey began in 1977 with choreographer Shela Xoregos, founder of Xoregos Performing Company in San Francisco. Finding that he and Xoregos shared a deep admiration for dancer Isadora Duncan, he wrote the play’s first incarnation for her to perform. Her company’s fascination with the intersections of dramatic text and modern dance gave the play its shape and form. The two went on to present the play in several Northern California venues throughout the late 1970’s as they continued to develop it.
In 1980, Xoregos moved to the Big Apple, and Foster continued to write—honing his craft by cranking out at least 15 additional pieces. He also worked as a dramaturg for Sierra Repertory Theatre where he met Janis Stevens. With her he wrote and produced Vivien (about the iconic actress Vivien Leigh). This show they presented at California Stage and throughout Northern California, the Northeast, and eventually New York in 2005.
With rehearsals in full sway, California Stage is excited to be working with three of Sacramento’s most talented and respected artists — playwright Rick Foster, performer Lori Russo, and director Janis Stevens — on Love, Isadora this fall. Meet them here and see why we’re happy to be in such good company.
Rick Foster is an award-winning playwright whose plays, translations and adaptations have been produced across the nation. He was a founding member of the Bay Area Theater Critics Circle, a frequent panelist for the California Arts Council, New Plays Director at the Asian American Theater Company, and dramaturg at the Lorraine Hansberry Theatre, Idaho Shakespeare Festival, and Sierra Repertory Theater.
California Stage will revive Rick Foster’s smash-hit show Love, Isadora starting September 20th. Professional actress Lori Russo reprises her Elly Award-winning turn as Isadora Duncan, the mother of modern dance, with Janis Stevens’ inspired direction.
Russo, Stevens, and choreographer Tracy Eisenberg all collaborated with Foster in New York to present Love, Isadora during the Ensemble Studio Theatre’s Oktoberfest in 2006. California Stage’s 2008 staging of Foster’s play brought the four together again in Sacramento–earning Elly Awards for Russo’s performance and Stevens’ direction, as well as Jessie Talbert’s lighting design.
Foster has revised his bold drama since that time according to revelatory insights into Duncan’s life and work that have surfaced within the past few years. Now, California Stage brings the illustrious, illusive Duncan back to life and explores her passionate obsessions with life, death, love, and art.