New York Actress Heather Massie Brings One-Woman Show ‘HEDY! The Life & Inventions of Hedy Lamarr’ to Millikin
The biographical play highlights the fantastic life of Hollywood starlet Hedy Lamarr
DECATUR -- Millikin University's Kirkland Fine Arts Center proudly presents "HEDY! The Life & Inventions of Hedy Lamarr" in Albert Taylor Theatre in Shilling Hall on Millikin's campus, Friday, April 21, at 7:30 p.m. Written, developed, and performed by New York-based actress Heather Massie, this 24-times award-winning, internationally acclaimed play has wowed audiences around the globe. A 2019 Fulbright Specialist, Massie has performed from Egypt to Zimbabwe, Ireland to Arkansas, Virginia to Iceland, Maine to Switzerland, and many locales in between.
The show celebrates the life and genius of Hollywood starlet Hedy Lamarr. Known in her heyday as the ‘Most Beautiful Woman in the World,’ Viennese-born Lamarr was also an accomplished scientist who invented the frequency hopping technology we still use in cellphones, WiFi, GPS, and Bluetooth. Massie’s portrayal is a mesmerizing celebration of this screen siren and genius—as well as dozens of characters from Lamarr’s life, including Jimmy Stewart, George Sanders, Louis B. Mayer, and more.
Heather Massie is an actor and writer based in New York City. Originally from Virginia, Massie has always been fascinated by the sciences, especially astronomy. She studied astrophysics at the University of Virginia, and theatre arts at the Virginia Tech School of the Arts, graduating summa cum laude. Massie has performed extensively regionally and nationally. She is a member of WorkShop Theater, Manhattan Theatre Works, NyLon Fusion Theatre, Firebone Theatre, Abingdon Theatre, and the Negro Ensemble Company. She has also performed on Theatre Row, at LaMaMa, Metropolitan Playhouse, The Lamb’s Theatre, 45th St. Theatre, Manhattan Theatre Club, The Dramatists Guild, New Dramatists, The Actors Studio, and more.
Massie received the Jean Dalrymple Award for Best Supporting Actor and three AriZoni Award Nominations. She served as a Cultural Envoy to Zimbabwe for the 2008 Intwasa Arts Festival, and has worked in Ecuador and St. Petersburg, Russia. Massie collaborated for many years with the late Tony-Nominated playwright Mr. Leslie Lee, another scientist turned artist. She performed at LaMaMa in his plays The Book of Lambert, and Mina, about the life of painter-poet, Mina Loy; and in Lee’s musical Martin: A New American Musical with music and lyrics by Charles Strouse, with the Negro Ensemble Company. Upon Lee’s passing in 2014, Massie founded the Leslie Lee Legacy Foundation to foster the continued production of his writings.
Massie wrote and developed "HEDY! The Life & Inventions of Hedy Lamarr" to combine her love of theatre and the sciences, while also illuminating a little-known piece of history. She has performed the show around the globe and it has garnered numerous awards, including multiple IndyFringe and RVK Fringe awards. She recently completed an Artist Residency at the New York Mills Regional Cultural Center at New York Mills, MN, where she continued research for the next phase of her work – a play about the life and accomplishments of United States Astronaut Sally Ride.
"HEDY! The Life & Inventions of Hedy Lamarr" dramatizes the eponymous screen siren’s unexpected genius and activities during and after WW2. After fleeing the Nazi invasion of Austria, Lamarr arrived in Hollywood in October 1937. Wildly knowledgeable about munitions and weapons technology, she worked with George Antheil to create The Secret Communication System, designed to make torpedoes more accurate. Also referred to as Frequency Hopping or Spread Spectrum Technology, her invention is used today in cell phones, WiFi, CDMA, GPS, Bluetooth and a myriad of other wireless systems. As an actress, she appeared in dozens of films, but she is best known for her portrayal of Delilah in Cecille B. DeMille’s Academy Award-winning Biblical epic Samson and Delilah, the highest-grossing film of 1950.
"HEDY! The Life & Inventions of Hedy Lamarr" is suitable for all ages and may be especially appealing to children and adults interested in science, technology, film history, or the theatre. In addition to the performance, Massie will lead two masterclasses for Millikin students in theatre and STEM. We look forward to presenting this world-class show to the community of Decatur.
"HEDY! The Life & Inventions of Hedy Lamarr", Friday, April 21, at 7:30 p.m. in the Albert Taylor Theatre in Shilling Hall at Millikin University, is a production of Kirkland Fine Arts Center. Tickets are $15.
Support for Kirkland Fine Arts Center has been provided by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council Agency. To buy tickets and for a full schedule of events, please visit kirklandfinearts.com or call or visit the ticket office.
Kirkland Fine Arts Center
Ticket Office | Hours: Tuesday-Friday, 10:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
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About Kirkland Fine Arts Center
Kirkland Fine Arts Center is located on the Millikin University campus in Decatur, Illinois. Since its grand opening in 1970, Kirkland Fine Arts Center has played an integral part in continuing the arts in Decatur and central Illinois. The center is home to a 1,903-seat auditorium and houses several music and choral facilities, lecture halls, art galleries and other multipurpose rooms. Kirkland Fine Arts Center has brought in many nationally acclaimed musical tours including Rent, 42nd Street, Grease, Godspell, Side by Side, Jesus Christ Superstar, Evita, Cats and many others. World-renowned entertainers such as Trace Adkins, Duke Ellington, Ray Charles, Little Richard, Vicki Lawrence and others have also performed at the center. Visit kirklandfinearts.com to learn more.
For further information, please contact LJ Pemberton, Marketing and Patron Relations Manager at Kirkland Fine Arts Center at 217.424.3931 or firstname.lastname@example.org.