REVEAL features the versatility of women in theatre and film! It is a celebration of how multifaceted women can be in their own God-given skin. We hope to demonstrate a small glimpse of what is unseen by revealing the unexpected in a variety of women.
I'm really excited to announce my next project! I'm heading to San Diego to reprise the role of 'Anna Davidson' in 5 X Tony Award Nominee, Michael John LaChiusa, and Sybille Pearson's new show RAIN. It will be directed by Berry Edelstein & include WICKED and RENT star, Eden Espinosa.
I love classic texts. It's like mother's milk to me & if I feel confident with anything, it's workshopping the work of Chekhov. I had the privilege to read YELENA and SONYA, in part, to F. Murray Abraham's UNCLE VONYA. It was a very special night for me. Eager for more...
Buy your tickets to our Feinstein's/54 Below show! Use Discount Code EAD20 for 20% off the main dining room. January 27th & 28th at 9:30 PM !!
In the meantime - Check out this video from the Goodspeed Production of "Indian Joe"
"Look how 73-year-old Harrison Ford is still celebrated as Han Solo on Star Wars: The Force Awakens and his Jedi counterpart, 59-year-old Carrie Fisher, is being blasted on social media for “not aging well.
My opinion: Harrison Ford looks old as the hills. Is he aging well? Not compared to a lot of women his age, but you know what? Great. Being old as the hills as a gorgeous thing; think about how much smarter, experienced and craft-savvy he must be. Might I even venture to say more sexy?Well, this depends on how we define ‘sexy.'
I was looking at magazines in a Duane Reade as an experiment and noticed something remarkable (aka not remarkable or surprising at all): Every single woman on every single magazine was air brushed within an inch of their lives, even Tina Fey and Amy Poehler who are poster chicks for pointing to this ridiculous / obvious gender factor. But they get it: To have a voice, they have to play the game and pretend to never age. The only woman who wasn't completely whitewashed with the gloss of unrealistic perfection was the TIME Magazine cover pic of Angela Merkel, The Person of the Year, Chancellor of the Free World. BUT IT WASNT EVEN A PICTURE. It was a drawing, a rendering that was an approximation of her reality. They couldn't airbrush her up and get away with it, because she doesn't exist on the spectrum to titillate, but to challenge. She's a bastion of brains and smarts-appeal, which apparently is not what we care about in this craven, inside-out season of society.
(*Shakes fist and tells the kids to get off her lawn.*) Anyway…
This was the discovery for me: The men on the front of mags showed plenty signs of age. The mags ACCENTUATED crows feet & gray hair. They ACCENTUATED furrowed brows. It was shocking at how blatant the image crafting really was. There was no apology, no shame. (This is not to say that men don't have LOTS of image pressure from all sides in different ways, btw. I'm not that cloistered in my perception of how this is all going down.)
But I'm telling you nothing new. Here's the thing:
This is not irreversible. Everyday people in everyday jobs who work at these everyday magazines have the power to say, "You know what, I'm not going to make this woman look like a comic book approximation. I'm not going to shave her thighs down with my electronic wand. I'm not going to CHANGE THE SHADE OF A WOMAN'S SKIN (!?) to match the ideal." Whatever that is. You know who else can help change this: we can. I'm as guilty as the next person for filtering a pic within an inch of its life and taking a selfie over and over again to look my best; slathering prescription strength skin meds on my face, etc ad nauseam. But we can also try to be real with one another. Vulnerable. And the more we are real with our real image, the more we can change the tide of exception.
It's a Real Movement. Hashtag that mess.
As actors, aren't we trying to be real? Isn't that what people pay a lot of money to see? People being vulnerable in real scenarios about real things? That's gutsy. That's sexy. I think if people are fed an appetite of real faces and bodies and ages, they would consume it as healthy. Tasty. But we are feeding people an appetite of candy corn, sugar-coated caricatures. So that's what we all expect from ourselves. We're gonna be sick to our soul-stomaches any day now. Oh wait, we already are. (aka any Real Wives TV brand you want to reference)
Look. I'm not being holier than thou about this tho, ok?
And I'll def be a hypocrite 10 times over with this. Cause, of course, I personally struggle with this a lot. I am in this crazy business and my face and body are my product and I want to work. So I play the game, too. I post flattering pics and smirky smiles showing how fun this whole image game is. (It's not fun at all.) BUT I also must be who I am: a woman, loved by my family and by God and feel free to say things like, "I had hip surgery last month and I looked a hot mess for days on end." (This is absolutely true.) (I'm better, but not 100% yet.) (I look a hot mess today.)
This is a confession, I suppose. This is me saying "I play the image game because I love my craft and it seems this is part of it for now." Especially when a beautiful woman like Carrie Fisher can't even be appreciated for her own rock-stardom in a franchise she helped create.
But I also don't like the game and, just like all false loves, it will turn on me and be a bitter root of resentment if I don't recognize it as an idol of our age. This is me checking and balancing myself with y'all. Let me not feed a monster of image expectation that will one day turn and devour me. Let me not fall on my own sword of pride and fear. (Moral of the story complete. Well... almost.)
This: Harrison Ford, you look pretty ragged despite being killer cool. But that's ok. Your image doesn't define who you are and aging is the gift of being alive. May we move toward a generation of culture makers who believe the same.
Both of these photos below, with ONCE castmates / creatives, were taken at the historic Angus McIndoe Restaurant on 44th St which closes its doors today. my first Tom Stoppard sighting happened there, after which I walked home to the Lamb's Theatre on 44th where I Iived when I first came to the city. (also bought and sold and transformed). my first meeting of Phantom legend, Howard McGillan happened at this restaurant with now-deceased producer, Randall Wreghitt. i tried to get a job at this restaurant one time and talked to Angus himself on the phone. i took lots
2015 was a fantastic year! I am thankful and imma tell you about it. Here is Installment #1 of a few of the professional reasons why 2015 was grand, but let's start off with the reasons that matter most (including vintage views of my fam, of course.)
The last part of December and leading me into the New Year has meant prepping for my solo debut at 54 Below. I have 13 original songs to share and my team is fab. So are you! So come join us!! Seriously! Get Tkts here: http://54below.com/artist/elizabeth-a-davis/
I also got to judge some crazy talented performers via the New York Musical Festival's Next Broadway Sensation, and guest lectured at King's College w some mad-skilled students. I watched some of my episodic re-airs like a dweeb, and brought a new literary agent, Max Grossman with Abrams Artists, onboard w my team! I binged on movie screeners and am slightly obsessed with a few of this year's Oscar hopefuls. #Suffregette #Brooklyn #SonOfSaul #TheBigShort (I couldn't make it through #TheRevenent but just give the statue to Leo. Plz.)
I took a trip to LA which was a barrel of laughs & got to hug my LA reps at DBA amongst other things, aka goofing off in Santa Monica at dusk. (i did not swim, but sported red, white and blue, so cut me a break.)
I did a fun shoot w Cates Hat Company & JD Urban in Central Park. You can get a custom hat from this 3rd Generation company at Cates Custom Hat Company
Something that took a ton of heart and soul this Fall was INDIAN JOE at The Goodspeed Opera House's Norma Terriss Theatre. The team I have was amazing, including director, Kim Weild, & made this process and product something very special. Im gonna keep working and keep you in the loop... Check us out below and at www.IndianJoeTheMusical.com
Please consider giving to the Joe Lightfoot Gonzales Memorial Fund to send a first generation kid to college here: http://www.indianjoethemusical.com/take-action/
I also hung out with the kewl folks over at Law and Order SVU & danced around w a fiddle and cried like a baby w Mariska and Andy Karl. Speaking of TV, I was a very not nice girl on Blue Bloods & a pissed off girlfriend on The Jim Gaffigan Show, w special guest Macaulay Culkin. 80's babies rejoice.)
I played Vittoria in Webster's THE WHITE DEVIL at STNJ to keep my classical chops up & spent good time at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. I also hopped the pond and went to see my ZORBA castmate, Zoe Wanamaker in London. It was a wonderful trip, spending time at Zoe's namesake, the Sam Wanamaker Old Globe Theatre and seeing two fantastic shows at The National Theatre.
Regarding travel, Jordan and I explored Montana and Wyoming this summer and would go back in a heartbeat. I wrote a new song there & tried desperately to find a bear. Only found a lazy moose.
Speaking of out of town excursions, I LOVED the next three 2015 creative journeys. I joined Michael John LaChiusa for his gorgeous new musical, RAIN, at Vassar College's Power House Theater. I spent more time upstate with my amazing INDIAN JOE collaborators at the Rhinebeck Writer's Retreat w superstar Kathy Evans. And I helped Tony Winning Theatre, The Cleveland PlayHouse, celebrate 100 years by performing a couple of numbers.
Stay tuned for Installment #2 of REAR VIEW MIRROR: 2015 coming soon!!
For any of you who have thought at one point or another, (or continuously) that writing a musical about your experience AND being in it is a presumptuous disaster waiting to happen, you are not the only one who thinks that. I think that. Or did. (Do? Depends on the day…) INDIAN JOE, the musical was never on my list of things to write, and I’m pretty sure I’m shocked it's happened. So this is the how-to of me moving from totally doubting myself and this process, to feeling like it must be done regardless.
I am the actor who has believed that if you don’t have your classical training, didn’t get an MFA and / or can’t weave in and out of discussions about psychological gesture, Grotowski Shaker Songs, iambs, trochees, dactyls, or anapests, then you shouldn’t be on the stage. (I’m really winning you over with my pride and prejudice, aren't I?) Thankfully, I don’t believe that anymore. But I do still believe that the training I received as an actor is essential to my longevity in the form. It’s what allows me to say with confidence that I am an actor. That’s what I do.
Therefore, based on this logic, I should never even try to put a pen to paper or tell a story in musical format: I didn’t formally study songwriting, composition, music theory, etc. (16 years of formal violin training counts for something, but not totally.) Still, there are tricks of the trade unlearned, and 10,000 hours of training left undone. So what authentic, viable writing can come from someone in such a position?
Hashtag Hack, I think. (Or thought? Depends on the day…)
But sometimes necessity trumps preference. That’s the deal.Sometimes a 120 pound woman picks up a car because it’s crushing her child. Sometimes a soldier runs 200 miles at a pop to avoid capture in enemy territory. The part of the brain that kicks into necessity when your good sense is saying, “You can never do this, you crazy person!” is the stuff that makes us realize we are more than we are. And isn’t that what we are trying to say with our lives in the theatre anyway? We underestimate the large swaths of knowledge that we amass as we move in and out of creating theatre in different ways.
(Disclaimer: I’ve never picked up a car or run more than 8 miles at a time.)
So no, I don’t have two MFA's (yet), but there is part of my brain that knows I have a really important legacy of a man named Joe to protect with this show, so rewriting lyrics again or finishing the illusive Scene 15 is me throwing the proverbial car off the other part of me that being crushed by my own fear.
Thesis Statement? There is no presumption to pin on me that I have not already pinned on myself.
One of the lines in my show is, “Being born is a mess. So is dying.” Another character responds, “So is living.” Writing a musical about real stuff is messy. But underneath that big mess of it all is a reward greater than my angst of dealing with my presumption and failure. If you come see INDIAN JOE the musical, lean in with me and know that I don’t know everything, but I know enough to know I have to keep going.
This is me getting into character for an audition self tape with no wifi & wearing a Vidal Sassoon shirt & looking thoroughly miserable. truth be told, i’m happyontheinside!, always
The week at Rhinebeck Writer’s Retreat with the Indian Joe team was really fantastic. We can’t thank founder Kathy Evans and the selection team enough!
Channing, Texas (Pop.363) - This is my home! ½ a mile from the house in which I was born and raised. Wishing: I was there.
Photo Credit: My Mama
We had a blast at the Covenant House Night of Broadway Stars!
The Real Thing (By Tom Stoppard)
I did this show previously and fell in love with the complexity of the character ANNIE. i did a workshop via Old Vic New Voices through which Kevin Spacey gave us a workshop. i presented this monologue and this is my best attempt to incorporate what Sir Spacey had to say.
The INDIAN JOE music team is ready to rock & roll!
Pictured: Jason Michael Webb, Elizabeth A. Davis and Luke Holloway
Heard an incredible talk with Scott Sauls about the ‘ubiquity of outrage’ in our country. He talked about the polarizing and detrimental affects of being perpetually outraged and how there is an objectification of persons attached to it. Be a life giving minority rather than a religious, political or social majority. To deeply disagree with someone and to deeply love them simultaneously is maturation in action.