Drama/Comedy. By Anne Ludlum.
Cast: 2w. We are at a rehearsal space in Manhattan's Greenwich Village. Kate arrives to work alone on her role, Catherine of Aragon, for a production of Shakespeare's Henry VIII. She is particularly anxious to learn a 15th-century Spanish court dance. As Kate starts the music for the dance a mysterious woman in a long cape appears. She introduces herself as Isabel, the Catholic Monarch, mother of Catherine of Aragon. Kate assumes Isabel is a dancing teacher and acting coach sent by the director of Henry VIII and initiates a series of acting exercises in which both she and Isabel participate. Although somewhat baffled by these exercises, Isabel is forced by Kate to accept her as her daughter, and Isabel inadvertently provides helpful suggestions to Kate as to how to play Catherine. When Isabel reveals her blatant anti-Semitism, Kate tries to stop the "coaching session." But Isabel persists in giving instructions because assisting Catherine of Aragon can gain Isabel release from almost 500 years in purgatory. Each woman, fiercely dedicated to her own mission, embodies the values of her own time and place. They clash on matters of belief and of behavior. Although neither ever fully understands who the other is, eventually each woman voluntarily aids the other, their mutual help culminating in a dance lesson in which Isabel gives Kate much more than just dance instruction. One int. set.