Mary’s Medicine: Hollywood Fringe Festival Production 2017


Who would have ever thought a “Nurse” invented Ginger Ale aka Ginger Beer!

I totally learned something new when I attended the production of Mary’s Medicine at the Hollywood Fringe Festival.


Nurses wearing their work scrubs home sick from an evening shift gather around a table. One nurse offers the other “Ginger ale” to calm her sick stomach. She then starts to tell the story of Mary Seacole, one of the early inventors of ginger ale and also a NURSE.


This was the opening scene to “Mary’s Medicine,” a play chronicling the life of Mary Seacole , a half Scottish half Jamaican Nurse..


Mary Seacole was a nurse, entrepreneur, inventor and pioneer.


Proprietor of a hotel, Mary nursed her sick husband who was a white man. Once he passed away, she took off to join her brother in an adventure on the Panama Canal nursing sick workers with her tonics. She felt that she could offer more with her services and took off to Crimea to enlist in the war as a nurse.


That’s when she meets Florence Nightingale, who refuses to accept Mary into the British nurses alliance because of her skin color. Mary then does what any good entrepreneur would do; she goes to the front lines, recruits soldiers/ patients and opens up a hotel. There she nurses soldiers back to health with her tonics and remedies. Of course Flo continues to bully Mary, and states that although she is helping people she is still going to report her to the queen!



Amy Argyle, the actress in the role of  Mary, captured her spirit with extreme passion! Especially when she had to stand her ground and defend her purpose with Florence Nightingale. Her personality came through with the colorful period dresses that Mary wore in contrast to the drab grey conservative frock that Flo had on. The actors in the production re enacted the time period piece magnificently. And of course the play was masterfully written by play write Matthew Robinson!


I would love this production to be performed for nursing students. It has a multitude of information to offer.


Mary’s Medicine was a beautiful production. Personally, I was inspired by Mary’s story since I’ve had to “Step Out Of The Box” in order to spread my message and do my own thing! Definitely not an easy task! I can only imagine how difficult it was for Mary. There was no Internet, Instagram or social media to spread her message. She was persistant and succeeded!

I’ve come across many “naysayers” ever since I started on my entrepreneurial journey. I don’t listen to them, much like Mary, I listen to my spirit … and it beckons me to keep going!