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Taimi Barty, furnituremaker

Becoming Julia Morgan

Boutelle_201_castle_julia__elephant_sm The world premiere of Belinda Taylor's Becoming Julia Morgan, a dramatic production about California's most famous architect and the United States' most famous woman architect, opens January 14, 2006 at the California Stage in Sacramento. From the press release:

BECOMING JULIA MORGAN is a two-act play for four actors. The role of Julia will be portrayed by highly regarded Equity actress Janis Stevens, who recently performed in an acclaimed run in New York City of VIVIEN (about the life of actress Vivien Leigh). William Randolph Hearst will be played by Equity actor James C. Anderson, who recently returned for a tour with the Nevada Shakespeare Company. Grace Crow, a California Stage company member will play Marion Davies and Peter Playdon who recently starred in Carry the Tiger to the Mountain with InterAct Theater Company will play many of the famous people known by the reclusive architect brought to life in Ms. Taylor’s play.

The play chronicles the life and career of eminent California architect Julia Morgan. Julia Morgan was an artist of great originality and acknowledged integrity. She was an enigmatic woman with an elusive and fascinating personality who pursued her career goals at a time when architecture was exclusively a man’s profession. She worked 25 years with William Randolph Hearst, designing and building the magnificent Hearst Castle at San Simeon and built over 8oo public buildings and homes throughout California. However this true master architect battled ailments, and sexism in the early 1900s that could have sidelined her career. See how she overcame these barriers in this first full-length play on her life.

pictured: Julia Morgan with a baby elephant; my favorite photograph of her, and a scene not likely to be reproduced in the play.