Theatrical impresario and local hero, Heather Fisch wants you to know that her newest live theater show, “La Belle Epoque,” is an invocation, calling to the ghosts of American Vaudeville. It is such a unique concept, we asked her to describe it in her own words.
Preview by Heather Fisch
At the turn of the 20th century, Great Barrington’s historic Mahaiwe Theater was a vaudeville house, like many others across the U.S., and it became a movie palace in the 1930’s after the advent of the motion picture. During the vaudeville days, the Mahaiwe Theater had a sign posted just below the stage that read, “Touch the girls, and the show is over.”
La Belle Epoque is a depression-era cabaret musical about a young gamine who plays footsie with the devil, gambles away her soul and eventually escapes doom by becoming a showgirl. It’s an ancient story wrapped up in a shiny package of slapstick comedy, fast live Gypsy jazz music and sexy lipstick choreography.
I was inspired by Dante’s Divine Comedy, The Little Mermaid and the mystical tarot, so the show offers viewers an array of symbolic thought lines. People are invited to read them into their own subconscious minds or to simply enjoy the story and the visions floating by.