Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Love, Loss, and What I Wore

Sitting through a performance of Love, Loss, and What I Wore at the Westside Theatre is like being trapped with five sitcom characters for 90-plus minutes without the benefit of an off button. Could anything be more boring than listening to a group of women drone on and on and on about clothes? Well, yes. If they had added hair too that would have been worse, so I guess we can be grateful for small favors.

The play, by Nora Ephron and Delia Ephron and directed by Karen Carpenter, is based on the best-selling book of the same name by Ilene Beckerman.  It has been playing since the fall with a rotating cast; the night I was there featured Katie Finneran, Michele Lee, Debra Monk, Tracee Ellis Ross and Casey Wilson. All were fine based on what they had to work with except Lee who seemed uninterested (this is understandable) and unprepared (which isn’t since they all read from scripts while seated on stage.)

The idea is for the women to use clothes -- the first bra, prom dresses -- and situations -- dressing rooms, buying the first bra -- to share stories of their pasts. But only the shallowest of women -- I could count the number of men in the audience on one hand -- would want to listen to a bunch of gals gab about this fluff. I love clothes too -- I subscribe to Vogue and forage through the recycling bins in my basement for fashion mags my neighbors have discarded -- but looking at clothes at my leisure is a lot different than listening to them being analyzed in silly detail for an hour and a half.
Among those who also have participated, or will, are Tyne Daly, Rosie O'Donnell, Kristin Chenoweth, Rhea Perlman and Rita Wilson. A portion of the proceeds will benefit Dress for Success.

For tickets phone (212) 239-6200 or visit Telecharge. For more information, visit LoveLossonStage.

(In photo, by Carol Rosegg, are: Michele Lee, Tracee Ellis Ross, Debra Monk, Katie Finneran, Casey Wilson.)

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