WWSF launched 2016 with our 36th Meetup event – Of Serpents and Sea Spray, a world premiere by Bay Area playwright Rachel Bublitz, directed by Ariel Craft and produced by Custom Made Theatre.  In the play, a twelve year old girl witnesses a tragedy that sets her off on a fantastical journey of self-discovery.  Iro, played by Maria Leigh, an orphan and lover of adventures, is ridiculed by other kids, and punished by her foster parents.   One day, she uncovers a mission: to find the winged horse Pegasus, and begins a mythic journey that will unite her with another lonely soul and uncover the truth about the death of her parents.  Playwright Bublitz explores how a child’s mind deals with unspeakable events.  This piece is intended for an adult audience.

This production, part of Custom Made’s ‘Undiscovered Works’ series, employs many female artists including actors Sabrina DeMio, Laura Domingo,  and Maria Marquis, and creative team Sophia Craven, Nikki Eggett, Brooke Jennings, Florence McCafferty, and Kitty Torres.

If you saw the show with the WWSF Meetup group or on your own, please leave a comment and share your thoughts about the work.



  1. Director Ariel Craft’s use of transitions in this piece helped to highlight the almost fairy tale aspects of the script – I loved the reveal of the ‘circus’ and the circus tableaux created by the cast. Maria Leigh delivers a grounded and complex performance without ‘commenting’ on being a child, and the scenes between Iro and imaginary friend Annika, played by Maria Marquis, were some of my favorite. I also appreciated the vaguely not now time period of the piece, as evoked by the costumes of Brooke Jennings, and an old fashioned pistol from props designer Florence McCafferty.

  2. I think Rachel Bublitz is one of those playwrights we will be proud to claim as Bay Area-grown when her career goes national in the near future! Of Serpents and Sea Spray offers a rich and inventive exploration of how one child processes trauma, but it also serves as a highly theatrical meditation on the intricate relationship we all experience between “real life” and the complex imaginary worlds we carry within. Ariel Craft’s playful and sharply executed staging underscored the tension between the play’s real and imaginary realms and made excellent use of Eric Ladue’s clever and surprising set. The acting ensemble fully committed to the play’s heightened theatrical style and there was literally never a dull moment onstage as we richocheted from invented adventure to expressionistic memory to surreal real-world circumstance.

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