May 21, 2014

Diary: MOM BABY GOD Spring Tour
An inside look at MOM BABY GOD's rise to total theater (and world) domination.

This May marks seven months that I've been touring my solo show, MOM BABY GOD across the U.S. MBG is as much about the attack on reproductive rights as it is a coming-of-age story for the show's central character, Jessica Beth Giffords, a 15-year-old teenage video blogger and Justin Bieber megafan who's raised in the anti-choice movement. The play takes place over the course of two days in Jessica's life, as she video blogs from the Students for Life of America Conference and struggles to negotiate her wish to be The Best and Most Pure anti-choice activist ever with her burgeoning sexual desires, namely her hots for a 17-year-old pro-life dreamboat (her words, not mine) named John Paul, who sports a purity ring.

After touring MBG on the east coast this fall, we decided to escape the cold and bring the show to the Pacific Northwest. Our west coast tour then became a four-city tour across the country, from Seattle to Portland to Boston to Lincoln, Nebraska. Along the way we partnered with reproductive rights activists like Seattle Clinic Defense and Boston Doula Project, and met high school feminists, Catholic missionaries and dozens of ex-pro-life teens. The most amazing parts of the tour were the conversations that came out of the show -- a reminder that live theater and art can tap into a political conversation and contribute something to it.

Touring the show the first time around was so overwhelming (in a good way) that I forgot to take a break to document the tour. So this time around I was excited to have a kick-in-the-butt from my pals at THE LE SIGH to pack a disposable camera and document the best and weirdest moments of touring. It was like packing running shoes to force myself to exercise while on tour, except I actually did it.

Find tickets to the next wave of MOM BABY GOD shows here.


Madeline Burrows is an actor, activist, and '90s pop music enthusiast based in Boston. When she's not pretending to be other people, she teaches theater to teenagers during the day and plays drums and sings in the band Tomboy at night.