Kelly Kinsella


Kelly is currently performing her one-woman show: "WHEN THOUGHTS ATTACK!"

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When Comedy Makes You Cry

I've arrived to my ultimate destination. Assisi. A writer's residency in Italy where I've come for two full weeks to work on a new project, or rather projectS, since I haven't churned out anything new for two years, nor written n'er a word since I thought I left my life as it was- a dresser on Broadway for 15 years and a creator of one woman shows that seemed to take me nowhere but back to my studio apartment in Manhattan. 

I decided to move to California, or at least make arrnagements to go there for sixth months, while I collected unemplyment from my last dresser job with JERSEY BOYS, - the little musical that could- and did- and ran- for 11 years at the August Wilson Theatre on 52 and 8th avenue, a mere stone's throw from my little studio on 30th and 8th. And where I went 6 days a week - twice on Wednesdays and Saturdays- to distribute underwear and zip and unsip satin dresses while listening to music by The Four Seasons. For eleven springs and summers and autumns and WINTERS- I biked up eighth avenue and down ninth, sometimes stopping for a slice of pizza to break up the monotony. Lets face it, pizza makes everything ok. I like to walk around with a xanax in my left pocket and a slice of pizza in my right, just in case any shit hits any fans I'm prepared. Who needs a gun?

So long and short of it is I found I grew beyond my dream of living in California (since I first set foot there when I was 12) and kind of ended up liking Oregon better where I had the privilege to present two of my previous one woman shows, but... I'm not there either. I'll get to the core of all that in my new one woman show I'm writing called KELLYFORNIA DREAMING- "it's never too late to pursue your dreams...until it is," a career I thought I was moving on from, along with my career as a dresser, but am clearly NOT since I also came back to Broadway to work as a dresser on Spongebob SquarePants-another little show that could, and did, but ran for only less than a year, and prevented me from writing anything during that time (or is that me that constantly sabotages myself?) while I worked overtime to make up lost money and new money to finally come here for a month to write a new one woman show. And eat. And maybe buy a new pair of well made shoes.

And the other two projects I am working on are an illustrated adult/children's book about relationships called PEP GOES TO THE POUND- my muse being Pep my boyfriend who makes me laugh, and cry and thankfully is still sleeping in the other room so as not to disturb my creative time (its 1PM but come on! He's jetlaggged!)- and a humorist novel called MOM GENES about how we all end up turning into our mothers or maybe marry our mothers since my mother also has the habit of sleeping til 1PM, with or without jetlag.

And I woke up this morning to do my daily free association journal which usually feeds right into the work which for some reason took me immediately to my mother and therefore MOM GENES and after an hour reflecting on my mother and laughing, I ended up in tears and so decided to come here to write a little bit to reign it all in. 

The beauty of the space is the monk like setting in a medieval hilltown in Umbria where yes there are hundreds of the best vineyards to distract me but there are even more Christian pilgrammages and therefore tranquility and spirituality and refelction. It is clearly proving to be an ideal setting with my floor to ceiling windows looking out onto a pedestrian street, the September winds blowing, very much like the Santa Ana winds of California. The coffee is better here too which helps with the writing and keeps Pep happy who is Italian and likes to complain but seems to be happy here with his people who are very good at relaxing and who can teach me a thing or two.

I am headed out to Perugia where the movie I DON"T KNOW THE NAME takes place (or is it CALL ME BY YOUR NAME), to buy some Maimeri italian brand water colors so I can get crackin' on illustrations of dogs (Pep is a dog in my children's book), and to get some real groceries. Assisi seems to only have specialty stores that sell cured meats, dried truffles and chocolate in the shape of St. Francis and the cross. Not that I won't throw a couple of those chocolates in my pocket. And thank god there are endless supplies of pizza. At this rate there isn't any room for the xanax and as long as these Santa Ana winds keep blowing I'll be protected by Saints on all fronts.

STILL LIFE OF WRITING TABLE-computer, cup of coffee and three books- Meditations on The Soul by Marsilio Ficino, The Eyewitness Travel book on Umbria and Italian Language Hacking by Benny Lewis




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