Friday, July 04, 2008

Mae West: Jessalyn's Juicy

MAE WEST knew some intriguing folks and the cast of "Courting Mae West" includes some colorful characters. Meet Starr Faithfull [1906-1931], called "Sara Starr" in the play.
• • STARR FAITHFULL was a blue-eyed, red-haired beauty who lived in Greenwich Village with her mother, step-father, and younger sister, and kept a diary (bound in faded red silk) of her sexual escapades. The 5' 6" high-kicker, who died in an expensive silk dress purchased at Lord and Taylor, knew how to shop and party but did not hold a sunny view of the human condition.
• • Reporter John O'Hara, who had observed the 25-year-old flapper at literary soirees, laced her into his Upper East Side novel, Butterfield 8, where she is renamed Gloria Wandrous.
• • Learn about her:
• • In "Courting Mae West," Starr Faithfull's counterpart SARA STARR is stylish and greyhound sleek; as MAE WEST says, "Any skinnier, she could be cellophane." A diarist, she envies professional writers but is more interested in selling tips than manuscripts. In her early twenties, SARA STARR provides a novel sexual awakening for ELIZA ROURKE, a sheltered housemaid, and turns over her diary to MARIO "Shortie" de ANGELIS, an action that sparks several consequences. SARA STARR is portrayed by the scintillating, sultry Jessalyn Maguire.
• • JESSALYN MAGUIRE — — trained at London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art (LAMDA), the British American Drama Academy (BADA), and has a BA in Theatre and English from Wellesley College. While in London, Jessalyn worked at the Royal National Theatre and at the National Studio. Previous theatre credits include: The Merchant of Venice, The Bald Soprano, The Lesson, Antony and Cleopatra, and As You Like It.
• • "COURTING MAE WEST" opens at 6 o'clock on Saturday night July 19, 2008 at the Algonquin Theatre [East 24th Street and Park Avenue South].
• •
"COURTING MAE WEST" — — showtimes
• • July 19th, 2008 — — 6:00 PM
• • July 20th, 2008 — — 2:00 PM matinee
• • July 21st, 2008 — — 6:00 PM
• • July 22nd, 2008 — — 9:00 PM
• • Tickets to "COURTING MAE WEST" are $18 per adult.
• • sells the tickets — —
• • Questions? Phone 212-779-3051.
• • The play is 95 minutes.

• • Get ready to come up and see Mae West, Texas Guinan, and the gang onstage in mid-July 2008.
• • Come up and see Mae every day online:

• • Photo:
• • Mae West cast • •
Jessalyn Maguire • •

Mae West.


  1. Starr's hair was dark but hennaed,say many accounts.

    No doubt, she was a stunningly gorgeous girl. I am planning on doing an oil painting of Starr based on photos of her before her sad demise.I'm trying, without luck, to find a picture of her sister, sometimes listed as Sylvia and sometimes as Elizabeth or Tucker, depending on the source. I may paint her, too. If anyone has a link to a photo, please let me know at to all in advance!

  2. I have her sister's photo but I never posted it online. I have photos of her entire family and their residence in NYC. Maybe when the play comes around again I will post those real-life images . . . either here or on my Starr Faithfull blog.