Spotlight On: Virginia Ginny Bartholomew
We try not to repeat our subjects in the IT Awards Spotlight. And sadly, it is with heavy heart that we break our own rule to say goodbye to one of our own. Thankfully, it is also an opportunity for us to honor and celebrate the life and work of a member of our community who left too soon.
I first wrote about Ginny Bartholomew in 2011, the year she was nominated for Outstanding Actress in a Leading Role for her portrayal of the infamous Scottish Queen in Redd Tail Theatre Company's riveting production of Macbeth. She was working with the Pearl Theatre Company, covering roles in their production of Richard II.
On April 22, 2013, Virginia Bartholomew passed away after losing a heroic battle with a rare cancer.
A Manhattan-based actor, director and teaching artist, Ginny grew up in rural Ohio listening to her dad tune pianos and turning pages for her mom who played in the orchestra pit. In New York, she worked in indie film, improv comedy and classical theatre. Her one-woman show, Frankenstein with Mary Shelley won the Best Adaptation award with United Solo. As a founding cast member of The Powel Crosley Theatre's Shakespeare on the Bay Festival in Sarasota, FL, Virginia played Titania, Beatrice, Adriana, Maria in Twelfth Night and Lady Bracknell in Earnest. Other favorite roles included Beth in Dinner with Friends and Carol Burnett This Time Together.
She was a teaching artist with Hudson Valley Shakespeare festival where she was developing Shakespeare workshops for persons with early Alzheimer’s. She was a kayaker and a hiker and a dog lover.
Byrne Harrison, a friend and theatre critic for StageBuzz.com, said of her: "One of the things that most impressed me about Ginny was her genuine enthusiasm for the work she was doing. When she would talk to me about her current or upcoming projects, she was so excited. It was never just marketing. It was the joy of someone who cared about her craft and knew how lucky she was to be successful doing something she loved."
Ginny and her fiancé Jim had decided that they would prefer a green burial, meaning that no embalming or chemicals would be used. “Ashes to ashes, dust to dust. ” So on April 25th, she was laid to rest in a woven casket at the Sleepy Hollow Cemetery to return to the earth in a beautiful, emerald green, fully-biodegradable evening gown. A final gesture of giving back.
And a very elegant and graceful exit by a leading lady.