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Capital Fringe Review: ‘Madame: Helena Rubinstein in America’ by Francine Schwartz

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Madame: Helena Rubinstein in America is a production of the Fourpence Theater. Their mission is to present works that explore the lives of “unique, female American icons.” According to the program, which I was able to locate after the play, this inaugural effort is intended to examine the lives and rivalry of Helena Rubinstein (Genevieve James) and Elizabeth Arden (Stefanie Garcia) about the origins and impact of these ladies in the creation of a mass market for beauty products. Both women delivered passionate performances.

Genevieve James (Madame Helena Rubinstein).

Genevieve James (Madame Helena Rubinstein). Saalika Khan was a standout as the Vogue Magazine reporter who witnesses Madam’s public relations mastery and gets a facial in place of the interview she seeks. Another standout was Amy Conley the accompanist whose medley of caberet melodies provided an essential mood setting and orientation to the era both before and during the drama. The performers were skilled in dance and were able to individualize their characters well through choreography and acting skills, but were less on the mark in their singing, which often required accapella proficiency.

For more information on the show and to purchase tickets, click here.

 

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