Arts “Let the games begin!”
posted by March 12 at 16:37 PMon
At 2:03 this afternoon, the Seattle Rep announced its next season would include I Am My Own Wife:
I Am My Own Wife by Doug Wright
Charlotte von Mahlsdorf, an elegant and eccentric 65-year-old transvestite, is the subject of this extraordinary comedy-drama. Not long after the fall of the Berlin wall, playwright Doug Wright began a five-year conversation with Charlotte that led to his hit play, I Am My Own Wife. The winner of the 2004 Pulitzer Prize for drama and the Tony Award for best play, Wright uses 26 characters – played by one versatile actor – to piece together Charlotte’s controversial life, which outlasted both the Nazi and communist regimes in Germany. I Am My Own Wife is a beautiful and profound story of survival.
At 3:57 this afternoon ArtsWest announced it would be doing I Am My Own Wife:
…Charlotte von Mahlsdorf, a soft-spoken but tenaciously gender-bending biological male who died in 2002 at the age of 74. Based on interviews with the real Charlotte von Mahlsdorf, this play is largely about Charlotte’s enduring the cruel repressions of the Nazis and the Communists. Her harrowing tales of survival through the eras of the Gestapo and the East German secret police are nothing short of breathtaking. But are they true? And does it matter?
“Yep, we secured the rights in November,” said ArtsWest executive director Alan Harrison. “I try to consult with other theaters but maybe I’m just a mosquito to them.”
Rep spokesperson Ilana Balint said the Rep also had the rights—it’s unusual for one play to agree to play in two houses in the same city in the same year.
The Rep hasn’t set a date for its production nor a director but Balint confirmed the Rep has been talking to Allison Narver, former artistic director of the Empty Space, who had planned to direct I Am My Own Wife at that the Space before it closed last November.
Neither the Rep nor ArtsWest was aware the other had scheduled the play.
“I’m not sure what’s going on,” Balint said. “Let the games begin!”