Two Queens of Drama

shirleyAfter achieving great acclaim with this one-woman show at Florida’s Sarasolo Festival in Sarasota, Jan Wallace reprises her role in Shirley and Me at this summer’s Planet Connections Theatre Festivity. SHIRLEY AND ME is about Jan Wallace‘s relationship with the character “Shirley Valentine” (a not so young working class Liverpool lady who just takes off on holiday to Greece sans husband). Inspired from Jan Wallace‘s years of performing the award winning 1986 Willy Russell play, SHIRLEY VALENTINE, to theater audiences in Connecticut and the New York area. SHIRLEY AND ME allows Wallace to relive her experience of performing SHIRLEY VALENTINE with humor and honesty, exploring how it affected her then and how the character of “Shirley” inspires her now.

Jan Wallace Writer and Performer (1)Unlike Shirley Valentine, Jan did not leave her husband, he, sadly, left her. Michael Wallace passed away from a brain tumor and Jan dedicates this series of performances to his memory. She has joined forces with the The National Brain Tumor Society to honor him with a specific donation site:

Performances are June 17 @ 5:15 p.m.; June 19 @ 7:30 p.m.; June 23 @ 5:30 p.m.;
June 25 @ 8:00 p.m.; July 2 @ 3:45 p.m.; and July 7 @ 7:00 p.m. For tickets, visit

This is a deeply moving piece for you. But what inspires you as an artist?

Communicating and telling my story to an audience is what really inspires me.    When I can reach out and make them laugh or cry, inspire them, or educate them – then I am doing my job.

Why do it “here;” why independent theater?

Independent theatre gives actors the opportunity to perform in small venues, often in a black box to an educated and intelligent audience.  Actors are encouraged to perform their own work, either as a solo artist or with a small cast.  The opportunities are endless.


occasionforsinA Jewish saint battles the Spanish Inquisition over the conquest of Peru in the new musical Occasion for Sin by Grammy Award winning composer Oriente Lopez, coming to The 2017 Planet Connection Theatre Festivity, which runs June 12 – July 9 at The Clemente, Flamboyan Theatre, 107 Suffolk Street, NYC.

A Jewish saint battles the Spanish Inquisition over the conquest of Peru in a new musical by Grammy Award winning composer Oriente Lopez, Occasion for Sin. In war for power, is God the most powerful player, or just a card you play?

This sweeping musical portrait of the quest for gold, God and glory brings the conquest of the New World to life. Filled with swordfights, faith and broken promises, Occasion for Sin weaves together the lives of the royal Incas; the court of Spain, where 13-year old Prince Felipe is torn between a bastard Priest and the corrupt Regent of Spain; and the woman whose determination to demonstrate God’s power in the world led her to become the Patron Saint of Spain, Teresa of Avila. Together, these passionate adversaries confront the timeless conflict of waging war for peace.


Let’s hear from book and lyric writer, Katherine Brann Fredricks…

270809_110431629099234_744657901_nKatherine Brann Fredricks (Writer/Producer) NIX (Hamlet adaptation, composer Massimo Malavasi) 8 Outstanding Noms, Planet Connections Fest 2016. Black Hole Wedding (Ramayana adaptation, composer Paul Nelson) Outstanding Music & Lyrics Award, 10 Outstanding Noms, Planet Connections 2015. Walden (Thoreau adaptation, composer Bert Draesel) Planet Connections 2013. Past President, Flagstaff Light Opera, dir. Sound of Music, FLOC’s 20th Anniversary Celebration & Brigadoon. Documentaries: The Price of the Pines & The Yavapai Story (aired on Cinemax, Bronze Apple at Nat’l Educational Video & Film Festival, screened NY MOMA.) BA Dance ASU. MA Musical Theatre Writing, NYU. Professional Filmmaking Certificate, NYU SCPS.

What inspires you as an artist?

As a musical theatre librettist, I usually write adaptations.  I’m inspired by conflict, a strong story with unexpected twists and turns, and characters who reach deep to face their challenges.  And of course, awesome music!

Why independent theater?

I ask myself that frequently, because it’s hard work & it doesn’t pay the rent.  But a script that sits on your shelf isn’t theatre – it’s just paper.


Writer/Producer: Katherine Brann Fredricks
Adapted from St. Teresa of Avila & Garcilaso de la Vega
Director: Jessica Bashline
Composer: Oriente Lopez

Performing June 23 @ 9:30 p.m.; June 25 @ 12:30 p.m.; June 27 @ 9:15 p.m.; July 1 @ 5:45 p.m.; July 2 @ 9:15 p.m.; July 8 @ 3:15 p.m.

For tickets, visit PlanetConnections.org





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