Margaret Bush, standing at center, will be appearing in “The Wicked Women of Whynot” at The Footlights Theatre in Falmouth July 23 through Aug. 29. Photo courtesy of The Footlights Theatre

Like a lot of actors, Margaret Bush loves doing summer theater in Maine and combining work with a vacation.

Though her vacation digs are a bit more spacious, and historic, than most.

Bush is married to Marvin, the son of the late former president. Photo courtesy of The Footlights Theatre.

Bush, who has been acting in Maine summer productions since the early 2000s, is the daughter-in-law of the late former President George H.W. Bush and the sister-in-law of former President George W. Bush. So when she and her husband, Marvin Bush, come to the family’s Walker’s Point home in Kennebunkport each year, she usually tries to combine the trip with some acting work.

This summer, she’ll by playing a hairdresser named Bev in the comedy “The Wicked Women of Whynot” at The Footlights Theatre in Falmouth. The show about women in a Mississippi beauty parlor runs July 23 to Aug. 29.

“It’s a dream for any actor to be able work here in the summer,” said Bush, 60. “It really works out well for me, because I work all year round, but in the summers, I can marry my work with spending time in Maine.”

She’s also acted at the former Arundel Barn Playhouse and, in 2017, performed in the play “Love Letters” at Vinegar Hill Music Theatre in Arundel. The latter was a fundraiser for Maine Medical Center in Portland, where she is a member of the board.


Bush met her husband while they were both students at the University of Virginia. She worked as an elementary school teacher for many years before realizing she really wanted to act. She had been in theater productions in high school in Virginia and loved it but had never pursued acting as a career.

“It was something that lived deep down in my soul for a long time. Finally, I said, ‘Why don’t I just do it?’ ” she said.

So Bush started commuting from Washington, D.C., where she and her husband lived, to study acting in New York City. She’s been acting in various theaters all over the country since the mid-1990s. She has mostly been in dramas and comedies but is currently working with a vocal coach so she can do more musicals.

During her years of performing in Maine, members of her famous family have come out to see her. George and Barbara Bush also invited cast members to cookouts at Walker’s Point, where the elder President Bush would take people out in his boat.

“The only thing he’d say to people was they had to sing for their supper. So we always had music,” Bush said.

The Footlights Theatre’s executive director, Michael J. Tobin, said he first met Bush when she came to a production at the theater in March. During a chat, they discovered they had worked at some of the same theaters. Bush mentioned she’d be in Maine in the summer, and Tobin told her about “The Wicked Women of Whynot.” Playing the owner of a beauty shop in the South intrigued her.

It wasn’t until Bush got the part in the production that Tobin said he found out about her famous family.

“I did not know she was a member of that Bush family until after casting,” said Tobin. “Not that it matters. I am in awe of how good she is on stage. Her instincts are always right.”

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