Theatre Professor Performs at Women’s History Showcase

From the March 2022 Desktop News | Allison Hetzel, a professor of voice and acting in UA’s theatre and dance department, recently resurrected her one-woman show about Georgia O’Keeffe for the first annual Women in History: From Now Until Then showcase in Chattanooga, TN. 

The show, Considering Georgia O’Keeffe, revolves around the famed modernist painter’s life, work, and relationships. After combing through five biographies, multiple essays, and dozens of critical works on O’Keeffe, Hetzel created a piece that moved through many distinct stages of O’Keeffe’s life, including her relationship with her husband, photographer and arts patron Alfred Stieglitz. 

“I’ve always liked Georgia O’Keeffe’s paintings,” Hetzel said. “But as I read more about her work, her artist statements, and her tumultuous marriage with Stieglitz, I became really intrigued by her life.” 

Hetzel originally created Considering Georgia O’Keeffe over a decade ago after a collaboration with fellow theatre and dance professor Sarah Barry. Although the project has been dormant for some time, she says that bringing it back has been refreshing. 

“I had to rewrite a short selection of the show in order to be part of the showcase,” Hetzel said. “It’s weird, in a way, to do a show that’s from your past. But after COVID, it’s been so nice to go back to this. It’s almost like when you find an old sweater that you love in the back of your closet—it’s nostalgic.” 

Hetzel performed the reworked version of the show at the inaugural Women in History showcase earlier this month. The showcase, which was sponsored by the Tennessee Art Collective, featured nine female artists whose mediums range from dance and acting to painting and found object art. 

“Since it was a juried show, I had to apply to get in, and I’m glad I did because it was such a fun thing,” Hetzel said. “I got a great response, and they’re such a nice group to work with. I do hope to be part of it in the future, whether that’s performing again or buying a ticket to attend.” 

For more information about the Tennessee Arts Collective, visit their website