The Frederick Gunn School Faculty will present a staged reading of Love, Loss, and What I Wore, written by Nora Ephron and Delia Ephron and directed by Gunn faculty member Sarah Rose Archer. The performance will be held on Saturday, May 14, at 7 p.m. in the Tisch Family Auditorium. Students, faculty, staff and the community are welcome to attend. Admission is free with general admission seating. All theatre patrons are asked to comply with the school’s current Visitor Policy.
Love, Loss and What I Wore is “a play of monologues and ensemble pieces about women, clothes and memory covering all the important subjects — mothers, prom dresses, mothers, buying bras, mothers, hating purses and why we only wear black,” according to Dramatists Play Service.
“I read this show and really fell in love with it. It’s compelling. It’s really relatable. It’s telling women’s experiences through the clothing they wore. For example, one character is talking about her Brownie uniform. She says, ‘We couldn’t afford to buy it, so my mom made it, and she was really proud of it.,’” said Archer, who has previously served as a producer and director of Gunn student productions, including Almost, Maine, in 2020. Archer currently teaches French and Spanish and is the Assistant to The Frederick Gunn School Theatre Program.
In her Director’s Note, Archer reflected: “We often feel alone in situations, as women. There are so many unspoken, taboo subjects that are truly common life events for almost everyone. This play, based on Ilene Beckerman’s book, and crafted by Nora and Delia Ephron, celebrates what it is to be a woman today. What woman doesn’t have a story from her first bra fitting? Who hasn’t been embarrassed by her period? Who can honestly say that she escaped adolescence (or even adulthood) without some horrifying experience that she thought she’d never recover from socially?”
For this one-night-only performance, Archer has assembled an all-female cast of her peers that includes professional actors as well as newcomers to the stage. They represent all facets of the community as faculty members, current parents, alumni parents, faculty spouses, and one is a former faculty member and alumna. Together on stage, they will “share these experiences, laugh at the absurdity, take comfort in the commonalities, and rejoice in sisterhood,” she said.
In addition to bringing feminism to light within the school’s continued efforts in Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, this staging of Love, Loss, and What I Wore is being presented to raise funds and awareness for the Susan B. Anthony Project in Torrington, which provides crisis and support services for victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. “While many of the stories shared in the play are comical, we also share stories of, and empathize with, people suffering. We aim to support this fantastic foundation in their mission to help others,” Archer said in her Director’s Note.
“We encourage students to practice art, and it’s great for faculty to put this out there and be on stage,” she said.
The cast includes: Archer, Cheryl Bell P’25, Kelsey Brush, Elizabeth Dayton ’08, Jo Dexter, Ph.D., Blaire Farrar, Kara Gritti, Jen Hart, Tracy Liz Miller,* Kylie Regan, Ph.D., Maddie Smith, Karoline Theobald P’09 ’14. The technical crew includes Archer’s husband, Rodney, who has lent his assistance to many theatrical productions, with lighting by Al Chiappetta, who is also Vice President of the Board of Directors and Tech Director at The Sherman Playhouse, and costumes by Terry Hawley P’08, who is a member of the Board of Directors and Costume Manager at The Sherman Playhouse.
Love, Loss And What I Wore is presented by special arrangement with Broadway Licensing, LLC, servicing the Dramatists Play Service Collection.
**Appears courtesy of the Actors Equity Association