When Scott F. Mason first saw Dame Edna Everage in the mid-1980s, he was struck by the purple-haired, snarky Aussie, brainchild of actor Barry Humphries. The Tony Award-winning Humphries, now in his 70s, continues to win raves around the world for his alter ego. Mason wins raves for his Dame, too, even on Broadway.
In February, surrounded by hundreds of bespectacled Dame wannabes, scads of reporters and Humphries himself, Mason was crowned the Dame’s honorary understudy for the show “All About Me,” which was playing at Broadway’s Henry Miller’s Theatre. The show closed after a three-week run, but Mason’s name appeared in the Playbill—a distinction that many Broadway actors wait years to achieve.
Mason, of Newark, first channeled the Dame for a Halloween party in 2003. Ever since, his Dame has been booked for local nonprofit, theater and corporate events. A National Dramatists Guild member who has written 25 plays, Mason is no amateur.
But “this gig was unbelievable,” he says. “For Humphries to say, ‘You’re so good at doing me,’ well, there is no higher honor.”
The accolade could add more sequins to Mason’s dazzling career. In March he rocked a party with Joan Rivers on Fifth Avenue, then co-hosted The Reel Awards in Vegas, which recognize outstanding impersonators.
Mason’s fans include Michael Musto, theater critic for the Village Voice and a contest judge. “Scott had a special spark,” says Musto. “He seemed to truly understand Edna’s subversive wit, which is playfully mocking but never mean. He had quick, funny answers to Humphries’ questions, and anyone who does an impression of Edna doing a Carrie Underwood song is an instant winner to me.”
Humphries, sans frock and fright wig, praised Mason. “I chose her. I thought she was great,” he said on a Broadway.TV segment. “There was something a little more good-natured about her than Edna herself. I hesitate to say it.” —Maria Hess
Page 2: U.S. Soccer’s Mr. Fix-It | Wilmington’s James Hashimoto helps injured players rehab for prestigious World Cup play.
Wilmington’s James Hashimoto helps injured players rehab for prestigious World Cup play.
The fate of the United States in this month’s World Cup soccer tournament could depend on the talents of Wilmington’s James Hashimoto.
The physical therapist is the U.S. Men’s National Team’s head rehabilitation trainer and some of the country’s top players have traveled to Delaware to rehab under his care. Stars from the current roster who’ve visited Hashimoto include Clint Dempsey, Oguchi Onyewu and Charlie Davies. “Back in the day the players would stay in my guest room,” Hash says. “Most guys who come are rehabbing after a surgical procedure.”
Hashimoto, 43, has been with the U.S. soccer program since he earned his master’s in physical therapy from UD in 1991. He succeeded fellow Blue Hens alum Andrew Rudawsky as the National Team’s head trainer in 1998, but left that role last year. The switch means less traveling, which allows Hashimoto to focus on his private practice, Elite PT in Wilmington, which he runs with Rudawsky.
“I’m not making the trip this time,” says Hashimoto, who would have worked his fifth World Cup. “All my friends think I’m nuts.”
Hashimoto has drawn much praise for his work with Davies, who was seriously injured in a car crash last fall. Davies has titanium rods implanted in his left leg and metal plates in his face and left elbow. Still, thanks in part to Hashimoto, Davies may be able to play when the World Cup begins June 11. “I just talked to Charlie,” Hashimoto said in mid-April. “He’s back in France and ready to train. His story is amazing.” —Drew Ostroski
Page 3: Hagley Goes Global | A new Website puts the museum and library’s collections—14,000 pages worth—at the world’s fingertips.
A new Website puts the museum and library’s collections—14,000 pages worth—at the world’s fingertips.
The Hagley Museum and Library has created a Website to connect history with the 21st century.
The Wilmington-based museum-library focuses on how business and technology shaped American and international history. Terry Snyder, deputy director of Hagley, says that, though the focus is Delaware’s own du Pont family and DuPont Co. history, the benefits of the museum and library reach far beyond.
“This is an internationally regarded research facility,” she says. “People come from all over the world to use it.”
Until recently, the library’s vast array of information has only been available to those who are able to explore the facilities first-hand. The Website was created to open the historic collection to a wider audience.
“The library wanted to complement the museum’s great work and share the information with the whole public,” Snyder says. “There are people using the collections that can’t come to Hagley otherwise.”
Through the site, Hagley now has a truly global impact, Snyder says. “We have people accessing it from countries all over the world.”
Thanks to a dedicated team of library staff and interns, 14,000 documents are now archived on the museum’s Website and are ready to explore in-depth. More than 100 interactive screens educate the user by displaying information that in the past would have taken days to read.
The site is focused on the origins of the DuPont Co. The next step is to include a more complete history of the company, up to the 20th century.
Though transferring the information to the Internet is a laborious task, the benefits are worthwhile. Says Snyder, “We are so excited to share it with the people of Delaware, the nation and the world.”
To access the archives, visit hagley.org. —Jillian Harig
Page 4: Media Watch
Jeremy O’Keefe, 30, is living in Los Angeles pursuing a film career that began in Delaware. The Wilmington native and Cab Calloway School of the Arts graduate is an actor, writer, director and producer. His credits include his first feature film, “Wrestling,” and a short film, “Closure.” His next feature, “Somewhere Slow,” is in the works. —Caitlin Maloney