Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Clown Fest Interview - Christina Gelsone and WT McRae of A-Dressing History

By Byrne Harrison

Name: Christina Gelsone and WT McRae
Show: A-Dressing History
Relationship to show: Creators and performers

Tell me a little bit about A-Dressing History.

Our goal is to make American history funny and stick like Velcro. Both fun and educational, our show explores history through clothes we wear everyday. Supposedly the show is for kids, but adults have as much fun and learn even more than the children do. It's like a mash-up of Alton Brown, the History Channel, and Electric Company.

What inspired you to create it?

We've both performed for years in schools, and the teachers kept saying how much they wished they could make curriculum as fun as our storytelling shows. One day we looked at each other and said "We can do that."

What is your clowning background?

There's the formal training, like Christina went to the Dell'Arte School of Physical Theater, and WT has a BFA from Adelphi University. But formal teaching only gets you so far. The most important part of comedy is to perform hundreds of times and just get better, bit by bit. In other words, you have to be willing to suck... for a long time.

What would you tell someone who is afraid of clowns to get them to
come to your show?

Though we are clowns, we don't wear noses or use make-up. We're just two affable comics who happen to have purple and orange hair.

What is next for you after the New York Clown Theatre Festival?

WT works for a Broadway theater, and Christina is competing at the Wuhan International Acrobatic Arts Festival in China.

A-Dressing History
Fool’s Academy
New York, NY

NY Clown Theatre Festival
The Brick Theatre
575 Metropolitan Ave.

Saturday, September 18th @ 3pm
Sunday, September 19th @ 3pm

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