Carmel resident’s one-woman play set for DivaFest

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Carol Weiss has been writing about the art world for more than 30 years.

One artist she wrote about captured her imagination.

“I wrote this play because my fascination with the artist Margaret Stark did not end with her chapter in ‘Skirting the Issue: Stories of Indiana’s Historical Women Artists,’ which I co-authored with Judith Vale Newton,” Weiss said. “I believe her life’s journey is brave and resonates with others who struggle with the choices before them.”

So the Carmel resident wrote a one-woman play called “Stark Naked,” which will be part of DivaFest. The performances will be 3:45 p.m. April 15, 7:15 p.m. April 20 and 6:15 p.m. April 22 at the IndyFringe Basile Theatre, 719 E. St. Clair St., Indianapolis. Tickets are $15 for adults and $12 for students and seniors.

Actress Ali Slocum will play Carrie Cohen, a graduate student writing about Margaret Stark. Weiss said Slocum also will perform as Stark, who Carrie channels in order to gain greater insight.

“As a woman who married early, who needed to create her own family before branching out into writing, I was fascinated that Margaret Stark made the opposite choice,” Weiss said. “She needed to establish herself as an artist but missed the opportunity for a conventional family, spouse, children. I feel we represent two sides of a coin.”

Weiss said she met many people who knew Stark, who died in 1988, when she was researching her chapter in the 2004 book.

“Playwriting is very different from journalism and biography,” Weiss said. “Though story is important to all, facts do not dominate in playwriting. Truths are revealed very differently in fiction.”

Weiss wrote for Arts Indiana for several years before the magazine ended publication. Originally from St. Louis, Weiss moved to Indianapolis in 1979 and then to Carmel in 1992.

For more, visit indyfringe.org.

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