Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Love, Loss, and What I Wore at Theater Conspiracy

When I was still living in New York, my friend Andrea and I went to see the play Love, Loss, and What I Wore by Nora and Delia Ephron.   It is the theater equivalent of a chick flick--five women sitting onstage telling stories of their lives through their clothing choices.  The actresses actually have their scripts at their fingertips so, while there is definitely acting involved, it is a perfect vehicle for a revolving cast.  The night Andrea and I saw the show, Fran Drescher was one of the cast members and, yes, that is actually her voice!

Fast forward to last Saturday night at Theater Conspiracy in Fort Myers where Love, Loss and What I Wore is being staged.  My friend and editor extraordinaire Kathy Grey was in the show that night and played the same roles that Fran Drescher assumed when I saw the show in New York.  Kathy was great-- as were the other four women--as they regaled the audience with stories of the trauma of bra fittings and wondering if an outfit makes them look fat and the various iterations of Madonna that they dressed up as for Halloween in the '80s.  One story was about a woman's Betsy Johnson paper dress, and my friend Kathy Hollinger leaned over and whispered to me, "I had one of those!  The boys were always threatening me with their Bic lighters."  While most of the scenes were laugh out loud funny, others were quite poignant.  There's the story of a girl who goes shopping with her dad after her mother dies for her first store-bought dress, and the woman who relates her fashion choice of boots and short skirts to being raped.  It was a great evening of theater, with stories that every woman in the audience could relate to (and that hopefully made the few men in the audience appreciate why it often takes women so long to get dressed!)  Plus, each of the ten performances of the show benefits a different local non-profit that is near and dear to the heart of one of that evening's cast members.  Talk about a win-win.

While I have never been a fashionista, the stories did make me think back to some of the significant clothing events in my life.  Take, for instance, the embarrassment of being measured for my cheerleading uniform when I was in junior high.  I am old enough now that I can just admit it--I have wide hips.  It doesn't matter if I'm on the low or high end of my weight range, the hips are always going to be there.  When I was lamenting this fact to one of my teachers, I still remember her words of support, "Your hips will be good for child bearing."  Now if that doesn't make a 12 year old girl feel better about her body, I don't know what will!

The story of the woman whose baby blue prom dress matched her date's baby blue tux (remember those?) brought back memories of one of my own prom dresses--a black strapless number that was slit up to my thighs.  I wasn't worried about my big hips that evening (although I was a bit worried about how to handle the corsage!)

And, of course, I could totally relate to the story entitled "I Hate My Purse."  As Kathy (playing Nora Ephron in this scene) talked about how her purse seems to carry every bit of her life in it--gum wrappers, food from her last airplane trip, used and unused Kleenex--I thought about my own relationship with my purses.  I actually have a name for my purse--it's called my "Let's Make a Deal" bag.  Remember the show with Monte Hall yelling out to the audience, "Who has a can of Spam?  How about a wrench?" and some woman would grab the item out of her bag and run up to the stage in a frenzy of excitement?  Yes, my bag is the modern day equivalent.  I always have at least one beverage, reading material, gum, keys, reading glasses (which I can NEVER find), and an assortment of other items in my purse that I just can't leave home without.  

Love, Loss, and What I Wore is running at the Theater Conspiracy through May 25th, and tickets are only $20.   If you're in the area and your schedule permits, grab some girlfriends and take in the show.   I promise that a fun night of theater awaits you.   


  1. I'll be sure to see if this show is playing in the Atlanta area soon. Loved your descriptions of it and of your purse - LOL! I think we literally live out of then.
    Blessings, Nanette!

  2. Nanette, I had a blast last Saturday night. I love that a whole group of us gals went, not really knowing one another, yet our womanhood united us through this fabulous play by Nora and Delia Ephron and our desire to support our friend Kathy Gray.
    Thank you for having me along and thanks for driving!


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