Image (8) laurel-by-mary-mcculley1.jpg for post 423

Artistic Biography

B.A. in Theater from Vassar. – Actress in regional theaters all over the country. Equity and S.A.G. cards. Wrote and directed two plays. Morphed into Cabaret Singer with brother on piano in Florida. M.F.A. program in Acting at Asolo State Theater, Florida State U –met Joe Papp. Dropped out. Move to New York for part in off-Broadway “Nunsense”- met Jazz musicians, became Jazz Singer, continued Cabaret, Fellow at Cabaret Symposium at Eugene O’Neill Theater, added audience interaction, comedy, improv, politically worksheets, incorrect banter. Consistently fired. Moved to Brooklyn and into isolation to become writer. Hired as columnist for New York Press and Waterfront Week as Dr. L.H. Casey. Published short stories. Accepted at Middlebury College as Fellow at Breadloaf Writer’s Conference. Started novel. Found literary agent. Broke. Started singing in Cabaret Clubs again dressed as Monkey with organ grinder as accompaniment. Sang in Subways. Incorporated writing into performances. Became Performance Ethicist and developed Literary Vaudeville act.- developing characters struggling with ethical dilemmas. Read stories behind a podium in unlikely settings: Laundromats, Chinese restaurants, bowling alley, deli on 57th Street. (on New Years Eve David Merrick came in for tongue sandwich) worked for David Merrick as. Script consultant. Sexually harassed by his lawyer. Quit. Developed Word Installation Project in downtown storefront windows to evoke thought and paranoia. Moved to Newport, RI. Back to singing in pretty dresses in Newport and Providence for the mob. (Documentary of my experiences, The Hurting Truth, filmed) Blacklisted by Providence club owners. Voted “Best Impersonation of Lenny Bruce” by Providence Phoenix. Joined Drag Queen Trio for AIDS fundraisers, nervous breakdown. Put novel in bureau drawer. Microphone and sound equipment stolen from car.

Laurel, as Diva

Became Advocate for First Amendment, wrote editorials for newspapers, worked with ACLU on City Noise Ordinances. Back to New York City as Clown Nurse. Worked at St. Vincents hospital with cabaret matrons (Margaret Whiting) in AIDS ward. Continued to write short stories. Attended Hunter College for Master’s in Drama Therapy. Developed “Page to Stage” program and continued to search for appropriate venue for my work. Nude modeling. Singing waitress. Substitute drama teacher. Moved to Washington D.C. for the winter to do stand-up comedy with Improv group. Performances with Wooly Mammoth. Mother diagnosed with Alzheimers. Moved to Vermont to care for her for five years. Did a few misunderstood performances in Middlebury. Mother dies. Back to Providence. Finally figured out I am aPerformance Artist.

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