Big moves for Teesside woman in New York

A TEESSIDE woman is making big moves in New York, after the success of a play.

Francesca Bolam’s, Untitled Monologues play, debuted at Broadway Rogue Theater Festival in December.

Untitled Monologues explores the experiences of addiction, mental illness and loss, through the journey of five women in therapy.

Ms Bolam, 27, from Stockton, said: “I thought it was crucial to tell these stories, that are often pushed under the carpet, especially in a global pandemic when many of us are alone with ourselves, confronting all sorts of things.”

The play was part of Rogue Theater Festivals 2020 line up in association with the iconic 13th Street Repertory Theatre.

Ms Bolam said: “I was absolutely blown away by how the play was received and how people from all walks of life shared how they deeply related.”

Alongside Francesca’s own narrative within the play, she was joined by Anne Windsland (High Maintenance HBO, Ophelia The Pearl Theatre), Selamawit Worku (She’s Gotta Have It NETFLIX directed by Spike Lee), Te’Era Coleman (Men On Boats, The NOLA Project) and Alexis LaBarba (the Wooster Group and New York Shakespeare Company).

Initially moving across the pond to attend The American Musical and Dramatic Academy in New York, alumni include Janelle Monaé and Jesse Tyler Ferguson.

She has performed and collaborated with iconic venues and performers in New York such as The Peace Poets and The Poetry Project.

She said: “It’s like a dream, who would have thought a small town girl from Teesside could thrive in NYC?”

Ms Bolam is currently lead vocalist on a project of Grammy winning, Oscar nominated producer Bassy Bob Brockmann, who has worked with Lauryn Hill, Kirk Franklin and Christina Aguilera.

International New York based production company “New Winds”, whose projects have appeared in Venice Film Festival, will be producing “Hoyt Street” a play where Ms Bolam plays the lead role Melissa.

She said she is ecstatic to be embarking on an Artist in Residence program with Rogue at The Players Theatre NYC.

Ms Bolam grew up performing and sang with the Billingham ‘Friday Choir’ under the leadership of the late Margaret Eglington.

The Northern Echo | Teesside