New York Film Academy acting instructor, Anastasia Coon is bringing her one-woman show, Gracie & Rose, to the Art of Acting studio in Hollywood as part of the Hollywood Fringe Festival. The festival takes place in venues throughout Hollywood during the month of June, and promotes groundbreaking work in small venues. As Anastasia says, “A huge part of Fringe is the social aspect. You see a show, hang out with actors, and have a drink with them.”
In Gracie & Rose, Anastasia portrays multiple characters living in Wyoming in the 1950s. The character of Gracie has to deal with the intense demands of the land, caring for animals, and running a ranch. She also disguises herself as a man so she and Rose can be together.
Inspired in part by Anastasia’s time living on a farm in France, the play was cultivated over the past dozen years. “It’s a good story. Old-fashioned storytelling. And it’s a love story about living authentically by any means necessary,” she says.
While Gracie & Rose is not based on a specific true story, Anastasia says, “It’s based on true stories of women through our history that we never hear about.” In fact, there are many well-documented incidents of women living as men for various reasons throughout history – in Aboriginal communities, throughout the Middle East, and during the American Civil War. Anastasia continues, “Because we’re deprived of those stories, there are huge omissions in American history, the history of the Western states, and women around the world.”