The next offering in Theatre Erindale’s “Silver Season” is Wendy Wasserstein’s hilarious and insightful comedy Uncommon Women and Others. And in the guest director’s chair is one of the most distinguished artists in Canada, Diana Leblanc.
The show runs January 21-31 at the Erindale Studio Theatre.
In the late ’70s, five vivid personalities look back on their years at prestigious Mount Holyoke College and others join them in flashback to steer through the minefield of the changing past and present – as the women they were become the women they are.
The play pulls no punches, either in its wicked sense of comedy, or in depicting a decade that brought radical change.
Swoozie Kurtz, Glenn Close, and Meryl Streep starred in the original stage and screen versions; now it’s time for the next generation to step into their shoes!
“You leave the theatre caring deeply about its characters,” said the New York Post. The Times called the play “exuberant … funny … acute … The main emphasis is upon the lacerations, hopes, despairs and confusions that the times inflict upon these students.”
Semi-autobiographical, Uncommon Women and Others was Wendy Wasserstein’s thesis production at the Yale School of Drama. It was immediately picked up for full production, then moved to Broadway and on to PBS with the same legendary cast. Wasserstein’s subsequent writing career climaxed with two more Broadway hits in a row: The Heidi Chronicles (1988 – winner of the Tony Award and Pulitzer Prize, and scheduled for Soulpepper this May co-starring TDS grad Paolo Santalucia), and The Sisters Rozensweig (1992 – Outer Critics Circle Award).
A member of the American Theatre Hall of Fame, she died of lymphoma in 2006. “I believe I had the confidence to become a playwright” she once said “because I learned at Mount Holyoke the value of an individual woman’s voice.”
“It is a rare and happy occasion,” says Leblanc, “that allows you to direct a group of student actors in a production where all except one play characters their own age … [and] in a life situation which resembles their own. Graduation. Facing a world they have been preparing for and, at the same time, one which they have been sheltered from.”
Leblanc has received nationwide acclaim as an actress and director for theatre, opera, film and television. She is a member of the National Theatre School of Canada’s first graduating class, a member of the original Neptune Theatre (Halifax) company, a former artistic director of Théâtre français de Toronto, and a founding member of Toronto’s Soulpepper Theatre Company. She has won (among others) a Gemini Award, the Silver Ticket Dora Mavor Moore Award, and the Governor General’s Lifetime Artistic Achievement Award.
Uncommon Women and Others runs January 21-31 at the Erindale Studio Theatre on the UTM campus. Single tickets are $12 or $18. Mississauga Transit Routes 44 and 110 will take you to the campus, and Parking in the CCT Garage is $6.00.
Audiences should be prepared to laugh a lot and gasp a little, as well as for sexual content and realistically coarse language.
For further information, call the Box Office at 905-569-4369 or visit www.theatreerindale.com