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Monday, March 12, 2007

“Let the games begin!”

posted by on March 12 at 16:37 PM

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!”

RSS icon Comments


Whoever signs Nick Garrison to star first wins!

Posted by David Schmader | March 12, 2007 4:40 PM

ArtsWest has already announced they want Nick DeSantis to play the role.

Sounds like Narver—and, one assumes, Nick—are lobbying the Rep.

Posted by Brendan Kiley | March 12, 2007 4:45 PM

nick garrison for one production and dina martina for the other!!

Posted by michael strangeways | March 12, 2007 5:12 PM

Why would ArtsWest want a former Canadian soccer star to be in their show?

Posted by COMTE | March 12, 2007 6:18 PM

Dina at the Rep would renew my faith in Seattle.

Posted by mark mitchell | March 12, 2007 6:27 PM

Ok. Y'all know that Doug Wright's piece is completely plagiarized, right?

Rosa von Praunheim did a movie a lot of years before Doug did his play. Rosa's film is called: Ich bin meine eigene Frau. For those of you that don't speak German that translates as "I am my own wife" and Doug's little play tracks the film almost word for word. Up to about 20 minutes before the end of the play, that is. Right at the point where Doug's writing starts to feel really clunky, contrived and awkward.

But Doug wrote it. All of it; all by himself. And I'm Marie of Romania.

Posted by jonathan | March 12, 2007 7:28 PM

Nick Garrison rocks a trenchcoat like nobody's business!

Posted by Hed-head | March 13, 2007 11:35 AM

All I know is, neither one of those damn theatres gave me a callback after I auditioned for them, so a plague on both their houses! Phooey.

Posted by Geni | March 13, 2007 3:27 PM

Comte....He's not a soccer player! ;)

In my biased opinion - I think ArtsWest has the street cred. to produce a play that has homosexual or "gender-bending" messages. Look at the work they've done in the past.

Posted by rrr | March 14, 2007 11:52 AM

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