“These bad #$@#%es are teaching me to really embrace my feminine side.” – Rae K. Hendersen of ETERNALLY BAD
We’re asking the cast 7 questions about ETERNALLY BAD. Serious or silly, here are ETERNALLY BAD cast member, Rae K. Hendersen’s answers.
Isis. Or the French thief in the Kannaki story.
What’s the strangest thing you learned in your research for the show?
Well, this isn’t exactly strange, but I’ve always been fascinated by the way cultures and religions become absorbed by others over hundreds and thousands of years, and the same mythologies are retold again and again. Inanna, one of the earliest recorded gods, became Ishtar when the Babylonians came to power, and she shows up again as Isis, and so on. Another excellent example of this are all those dudes throughout ancient religions descending into the underworld and then resurrecting in the spring… a story we’re still retelling today.
If we had stayed a matriarchal culture, what do you think would be the biggest difference in our society?
Rape culture would be wildly less pervasive, if not completely nonexistent. When society sees women as people with power and agency over themselves, the concept of them as objects or decoration cannot exist.
If you were going to sleep with any character in the show… who would you choose?
Circe. Wait, is it weird to choose one of your own characters? Artemis.
You change character a lot, what’s your most challenging transformation?
Right now, double dressing kimonos for Uzume, taking them off, and immediately putting them back on is taking years off of my life, what with all the sashes and sleeves and a million different places your arm could get tangled up. But we’re getting it! The costumer is amazing about rigging the pieces for quick changes.
Was it hard to keep a straight face in rehearsal?
Yes. I just cannot handle the entire Hawaii section. Everyone is killing me.
What has it meant to you to spend time reclaiming some bad girl legends?
I’ve been fascinated with ancient mythology since about age 11, so it’s been a blast getting to get some of these ladies that I’ve read about up on their feet. Their antics are bizarre and fantastical, like all classic fairy tales – but, unlike classic fairy tales, their stories aren’t morality tales about the importance of virginity and obedience. Performance-wise, it’s been very liberating for me. I’ve definitely stepped far outside my comfort zone, but in a good way. These characters are all so comfortable and confident in the sexual femininity of their bodies and their power over men – and as a fairly masculine-of-center lesbian, I’ve really had to work to get acquainted with that part of myself. It definitely started out feeling like I was performing in drag, but I’m feeling more confident in it now. So… That’s been different. But good. I guess what I’m saying is, these bad bitches are teaching me how to really embrace my feminine side.
See Rae K. Hendersen and the rest of the cast as they “get bad” in ETERNALLY BAD at MOXIE Jul 10 – Aug 2, 2015. Tickets available athttp://www.moxietheatre.com/eternallybad