We know that when there is cultural and racial equality in theatre, it makes room for artists of all walks of life to contribute to the history of theatre. It is vital that we make room, make way for women from all backgrounds to have a chance to be included in the future of theatre. It is with great excitement and joy, I introduce Odunayo Majekodunmi, the GIRL FROM SCHENECTADY! Odunayo’s #HFF19 show received an Honorable Mention from the Fringe. Odunayo takes us on a personal journey from her Nigerian roots to finding love in her hometown of Schnetady, NY… in the most unexpected of places. Does losing your virginity need to include true love?
Constance: How long have you’ve been sitting with this work? What led you to Fringe?
Odunayo: I started writing my show about 8 years ago. I was advised by my director, Danielle Mone’ Truitt, to open the show at the Fringe. I started attending Fringe one-person shows in 2017 and 2018, which gave me confidence to move forward.
Constance: The work is now out there; you’ve given it away. How does that feel?
Odunayo: It feels amazing! I’m so excited to keep up my show and to continue performing it for audiences. I’m happy with the feedback that I’ve been getting; most of it is from women stating the story is very relatable and they have experienced similar situations. Audience members have also mentioned the story is funny, entertaining and heartfelt.
Constance: What are you enjoying most doing your show? What has been the biggest discovery?
Odunayo: I am enjoying performing my show and perfecting it each time I get on stage, believing each performance will be better than the last one. I was nervous about how men would react to the story because I didn’t want them to think it was male bashing of any kind. Luckily, I haven’t received that response from the male audiences.
Constance: What’s been your biggest challenge in terms of the Fringe?
Odunayo: Producing and marketing the show myself. Writing the script, rehearsing, finding the right director was one thing. However, deciding to produce it and pay for everything was challenging – but I’m so proud of myself that I accomplished it!
Constance: What do you hope audience members take away from your show?
Odunayo: I hope audience members are inspired, encouraged and empowered in their lives, especially in believing in true love – women in particular who have experienced any kind of pain in relationships, or just haven’t had the best luck in finding Mr. Right.
For more information on THE GIRL FROM SCHENECTADY in HFF19, visit https://www.hollywoodfringe.org/projects/5754