2017 has been a tough year for Gilda Shedstecker Presents! Our productions were derailed by trials and tragedy these past 8 months. It began at the beginning when we grimly determined that our initial offering of Driving Miss Daisy in January would have to be cancelled when her leading lady, our Miss Kitty Deames Burgett, was diagnosed with cancer and began the battle of a lifetime.
Then our May production of Torch Song Trilogy was cancelled when director Grey Forge LeFey (née Doug Tennant) suddenly lost a close family member in April. And everything since then has been finding the horizon in a brave new world.
So. It is with unbridled joy that Gilda Shedstecker Presents! announces that our dear Miss Kitty Deames Burgett, with the ferocity of a much larger feline, has been whooping cancer’s ass. Still in recovery but a miracle of progress, her doctors have given her the green light to start planning future projects. And one such project is taking back the postponed lead role in Driving Miss Daisy, now scheduled for April 2018.
Kitty first joined our team with 2013’s Harry’s Hotter at Twilight and gamely took on the diverse comedic roles of Wonderland’s Alice, a parody of Lucius Malfoy, and the Vampire Godfather’s one-eyed daughter. Featured roles continued in Screwtape, Golden Girls LIVE, as Aunt Flippy Flop in Go On With Your Wind, and as Annie, the golden heart of The Lightbearer, culminating in two premier appearances as the zany and lovable Lenore Loignes Castrata in GSP’s Twisted and Shouting in 2016.
As a repertory company, GSP has always functioned more as a group art project than a community theatre. Most often the shows that are selected are the result of input from the core group. Performing the part of Miss Daisy Werthan has been Kitty’s bucket list role, and when it was impossible for her to perform in the January show, there was no thought of replacing her with a different actress. Daisy went into hibernation.
But the sun breaks over the horizon, and we have high hopes for each new day. Kitty has spent the past months doing everything she can to win her battle, with the help of her faith, her loving warriors, and her medical team, and it’s with immense gladness we have just purchased the performance rights to a new production scheduled in April next year, which will star our inimitable Kitty. The rest of the cast and production team will be announced at a later date, but this news just couldn’t wait.