⪧ We left our life in New York City to make a new one in Provence ⪦

November 19, 2011

Brecht.

A friend, Katelin Wilcox's, one woman show last night, performed at Theater Row on 42nd Street in the United Solo Fest left me thinking thinking thinking. She was stunning in a brilliantly written piece she herself wrote of the tale of Bertolt Brecht (1989-1956), or rather, the tale of his women. She switched between the roles of five fundamental women in the playwright's life - their love, losses and perspectives. These women each not only fueled Brecht's creativity, but were often the literal composers of his work, only eventually to be discarded. It was a feminist tale and one that, unfortunately, could be told countless times across history. One of the women, Elisabeth Hauptmann, literally wrote the piece that launched Brecht's career (The Threepenny Opera) and received next to no credit for having done so. If you look up the piece, she is still often listed, at best, as a 'collaborator' - when 80-90% of the writing was hers. The women in his life were writers, actors, creative forces who were stunted merely because they were women (Brecht seized the opportunity to make use of their force and these women often saw the 'collaboration' as the only way their voices could be heard, having been rejected from publishers and industry heads repeatedly).

The performance and its story were such a great illustrative response to anyone who asks, where were women in history? Artists, writers, thinkers, philosophers - they were there. This sort of feminist historiography is so heartening. Particularly with a little girl growing inside of me.

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