The women of Two Muses Theatre are wrapping up their third season with a gift for you. If you loved the films of the late Nora Ephron (Silkwood, When Harry Met Sally, Sleepless in Seattle, You’ve Got Mail, Julie & Julia) you’ll adore the play she wrote with her sister Delia Ephron. “Love, Loss, and What I Wore” (based on the book by Ilene Beckerman) is in essence the musings of Gingy – a woman “of a certain age” – who associates key moments in her life with emblematic clothing. There’s the cute Brownie uniform, the pretty school dress her mother made, the store-bought dress she received from her dad after her mother died, and a series of bridal gowns, maternity dresses and smart business suits that still hang in memory’s closet like pages in a scrapbook.
“Love, Life and What I Wore” is directed by Diane Hill, who had the brilliant (slightly manic) idea of producing this show so that each weekend features an entirely different cast of five women, including a local celebrity as Gingy. This is the final weekend, and it features Anqunette Jamison – the news anchor on FOX 2 Morning News and FOX 2 News “Live at 11.” Her Gingy is warm and reflective without being sentimental or sappy. She avoids blame, bravado and the ever-popular self-loathing – leaving us with a woman whose evolving wardrobe has left her comfortable in her own skin.
Interlaced with Gingy’s story is a running commentary by mothers, daughters, sisters, wives and lovers – myriad women remarking on the fashions that framed their lives. This ensemble performance is served up with loving exuberance by four actresses who assume multiple roles – Connie Cowper, Julie Yolles, Kez Settle and Rae McIntosh. Their life lessons – such as why black will always be the “new black,” why we never have anything to wear in our too-full closets, and how our bulging purses come to represent our true selves – are related in a way that any woman over the age of 15 can relate to.
Obviously, this is a play by and for women – but we wish there were more men in the audience, because we suspect they walked out with a better appreciation for the women in their lives. As for the women in the audience, there was a good deal of nodding, elbowing, laughing and blushing as the cast laid bare secrets we all keep in our collective closets. From boots to bra’s to berets, no subject is off-limits in “Love, Loss, and What I Wore.”
You have two more chances to catch this hilarious show – the Saturday evening show at 8 p.m. and the Sunday matinee at 2 p.m. Advance tickets are available for $20 for adults and $17 for students and senior citizens by calling 248-850-9919; see the website for details. Tickets are also available at the door for an additional $3. All performances are in the intimate 150-seat theatre inside Barnes & Noble Booksellers, located at 6800 Orchard Lake Road in West Bloomfield (south of Maple). Doors open 30 minutes prior to each performance.
In conjunction with this production, Two Muses Theatre is partnering with Closet NV to raise donations for DRESS FOR SUCCESS, a worldwide organization whose mission is to promote the economic independence of disadvantaged women by providing professional attire to help them thrive in work and in life. For more information concerning donations, call Closet NV at 248-626-9996.