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EDINBURGH 2019: FROM JUDY TO BETTE Q&A

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EDINBURGH 2019: FROM JUDY TO BETTE Q&A

Canadian Triple BroadwayWorld award-winner REBECCA PERRY, loved for her Confessions of a Redheaded Coffeeshop Girl shows will be diving all-singing and all-dancing into the Golden Age of Hollywood with FROM JUDY TO BETTE: THE STARS OF OLD HOLLYWOOD, at this year's Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Embodying a host of convention-breaking female megastars, the show is powerful love song to the stage presence and real-life chutzpah of these formidable women.

Tell us a bit about From Judy to Bette: The Stars of Old Hollywood.

From Judy to Bette: The Stars of Old Hollywood is a one-woman musical that looks at the lives of four of the most famous women of cinema's Golden Era. Judy Garland, Lucille Ball, Bette Davis and Betty Hutton changed the face of Hollywood in their own singular ways. The show is full of music from the era, and I sing many of the songs that these women made famous.

Taking each of these ladies in turn, I regale the audience with stories (and even some scandalous headlines) from their astonishing careers and lives - some familiar and some lesser known - I perform some of their iconic skits, and I encapsulate them through their most famous quotes and mannerisms. Weaving all of these things together, I hope to give a more 3D look at these four revered ladies. From Judy To Bette is a celebration of what these women achieved, the path they forged for future generations of women in the industry, and ultimately a love letter to their unforgettable talents - their stories should not be lost to history's pages.

What about these women is so inspiring?

I answer that question in many different ways in the show, but here's a quick teaser of their accomplishments: two of them had to carve a place for themselves in Hollywood, fighting for the roles that would make them famous, roles they would not otherwise have been offered; and two of them expanded the idea of what a female lead could be, making her so much more than the ingenue, ushering in room for comedic females and character actors to be the lead as well. In an industry that was male dominated, they stuck to their guns, and in doing so achieved great success, and we still remember them today as a result.

What songs are featured?

From Judy to Bette certainly features a lot of fan favourite songs. A selection of my favourites includes "The Trolley Song" from Meet Me in St. Louis, "You Can't Get a Man with a Gun" from Annie Get Your Gun, Lucille Ball's rendition of "Cuban Pete", one of the most famous songs from I Love Lucy, and of course "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" from The Wizard of Oz. However, there are also a few surprises in there too, such as Bette Davis' chilling performance of "I've Written a Letter to Daddy" from Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?, or even "It's Oh So Quiet" which is a song most people today immediately link to Björk, but which was originally the B-Side to Betty Hutton's "Murder, He Says"! Another thing I love about the show is whatever story or scandal I might be relating when I'm not singing, there's a lot of interesting underscoring going on at the same time. Expect to hear tidbits from 42nd Street, Gone With the Wind and much more.

Having performed at the Fringe before do you think you know what to expect?

In certain ways, yes, and in certain ways, no. The EdFringe is a truly one-of-a-kind experience, and I know what to expect in terms of the hustle I have to do, the bustle going on around me, and the process of the show. At the same time, each of my EdFringe trips has been unique. I have performed at two (in 2015 and 2016, with my two Redheaded Coffeeshop Girl shows), and also attended last year as an audience member, and I have learned something new every time. I don't expect this year to be any different in that respect, and I'm really looking forward to bringing my third solo show here and seeing what this August holds.

Who would you recommend comes to see it?

For starters, anyone who loves retro cinema, whether you grew up watching I Love Lucy re-runs, adore a Judy Garland musical, or cannot get enough of Bette Davis' sass! It is a show for fashion lovers, or for mother-daughter dates - even better, the grandmother-granddaughter dates! Honestly, the songs I sing and the tales I tell about these women are for absolutely anyone aged 9-99, as this is a story about four icons who burst into cinema, forged their own careers, and left Hollywood in a better shape than when they found it. In short, everyone!

Rebecca Perry performs in From Judy To Bette at Edinburgh Festival Fringe from 31st July -26th August (not 7th 14th or 21st).Tickets and more information: https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/from-judy-to-bette-the-stars-of-old-hollywood

Photo credit: Tanja Tiziana

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