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BIG HAIR: A RAD AND WILD LOVE AFFAIR to Premiere at the Hollywood Fringe Festival

Written and performed by Maegan Mandarino, BIG HAIR exhibits the hysterical nuances, subtle romance, and tearful departure of these two titans of comedy. 

BIG HAIR: A RAD AND WILD LOVE AFFAIR to Premiere at the Hollywood Fringe Festival

BIG HAIR. the musical-comedy and one-woman show about two of the silver screen's most dynamic performers, Gilda Radner and Gene Wilder, will premiere at the Hollywood Fringe Festival Friday, 6/10 for two shows at The Broadwater Second Stage. Written and performed by Maegan Mandarino, BIG HAIR exhibits the hysterical nuances, subtle romance, and tearful departure of these two titans of comedy.
In the formative years of the comedy industry, Michigan-born Gilda Radner had her acting debut in the Toronto production of Godspell (1972) along side other notable actors, including Martin Short. Radner also performed on the National Lampoon Radio Hour (1973-74) with big names like Chevy Chase, Bill Murray, and John Belushi, before she became a cast member of Saturday Night Live in 1975. Radner was a natural entertainer and mesmerized audiences with her uniquely hilarious characters such as Roseanne Roseannadanna and Baba Wawa.
After an illustrious career on SNL and subsequent projects, rocky relationships, and medical issues, Radner found a kindred spirit in Gene Wilder. Their serendipitous meeting occurred on the set of Hanky Panky (1982), which she described as "love at first sight". Wilder had already established himself as a dynamic comedian and world class actor in films like Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (1971), Young Frankenstien (1974), and Blazing Saddles (1974). After making another film together, Wilder and Radner were married in 1984.

They continued to perform together and made one more film. Two years after their marriage in the south of France and following several misdiagnoses, Gilda Radner was diagnosed with Stage IV ovarian cancer and had to undergo surgery. Though she eventually went into remission and was primed to start working again, she later relapsed. When told that she must undergo a CT scan and would be given a sedative, she pleaded with Gene and the doctors not to do so, insisting that she wouldn't come back from it. After the procedure she went into a coma and was pronounced dead from ovarian cancer three days later, never regaining consciousness. Gene never left her side saying that he "always thought she'd pull through".

Though both of these timeless performers have passed on, their legacies are kept alive by adoring fans and captivating performances that can be experienced by all subsequent generations. Echos of their talents and dynamic personalities helped shape the world of comedy and cemented their places as some of the brightest stars to ever grace the Silver Screen.
Writer, singer, and actress Maegan Mandarino was called to perform from an early age, and has brought her talents to the stage working as a professional actress for over a decade. Maegan recently toured as a writer/performer with her east coast comedy troop, and was the recipient of the LIT Award (2018). Having made multiple television and film appearances, Maegan debuted Big Hair at The Tank in NYC back in 2020. More recently, she has refocused her musical talents with the band Cheap Sentiment having released the single "Why Honey Why".
Maegan Mandarino, like so many, fell in love with Gene and Gilda the moment she saw them on television. BIG HAIR is, not only an expression of gratitude, but a means of reigniting the public's interest into the lives of these two wonderful actors, bringing the names Gilda Radner and Gene Wilder to younger audiences. It is a chance to see past the characters and the costumes and understand the circumstances that gave rise to the performances that continue to make audiences smile.
Tickets for BIG HAIR: A Rad And Wild Love Affair are now on sale for $15 and may be purchased by visiting Big Hair's Website or by calling 323-440-8584. USE DISCOUNT CODE: ABBYNORMAL for 50% off tickets.
Date: June 10th, 2022 / 6:30 PM and 11:00 PM
Location: The Broadwater Second Stage
6320 Santa Monica Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90038


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