De De DeVille will write, produce, and star in a one act play about first lady Deidre Russell’s rise to fame, and how she deals with being the first first lady in drag. It will be a three-character play, featuring the first lady, a reporter, and a secret service agent. The play takes the form of an interview in a Washington D. C. hotel room on the evening of her husband’s inauguration to his second term as president.
First Lady? is a play that explores the changing view on homosexuality and politics in American culture. The story is a vision of possibilities, and what the future could hold as social progress occurs in the United States. It is also an overview that reflects the changes that have already occurred for the lesbian gay bisexual transgendered queer citizens in this country.
First Lady? is about hope and change. Using humor and common sense, it will embody the best democratic principles that made America great, and imagine what could happen should these principles be completely embraced. DeVille’s hope is to use the play as a way to create a discussion about how people view those whom they perceive to be different and how political divisions arise. She believes that theater can provide a transformational experience for the audience, and wishes to provide models for future social change.
The play will première at the Fishtank Performance Studio, and will employ an aggressive marketing campaign, various media sources, and the local LGBTQ community to reach the broadest market possible. Additionally, the director and cast will host weekly talk-back discussions.
De De was born and raised in McPherson Kansas. In high school she attended a theater summer camp several years in a row where she got her first taste of collaboration and writing. After high school she attended Washburn University in Topeka Kansas where she studied art and theatre.
She then found her way to Kansas City where she quickly immersed herself in the art and theatre community, finding homes in both the drag and theatrical worlds by being involved with such groups as Late Night Theatre, and Minds Eye Productions. De De spent ten years working with Late Night, playing a variety of roles, onstage and off. She has also spent the last twenty years working on her own characters and ideas, using photography and the smaller stages of bars and cabarets to showcase her work.
Recent performances have included roles in a film, “NV in KC”, and an “An otherwise hopeless evening”, a site-specific production of four William Inge short plays in a former drag bar known as the Jewel Box Lounge.