I think I’d read The Heidi Chronicles by Wendy Wasserstein once in high school or college on my own, not for a class or anything. I’d completely forgotten what it was about but when Kristen saw, loved it, and came back telling me, “It’s about a feminist in the 60′s who bucks tradition of female roles,” combined with great reviews, I immediately bought a ticket on TDF and went last weekend.
I’m not entirely familiar with Elizabeth Moss (having never watched Mad Men and all) but as Heidi, she totally owned the stage and stole the spotlight. She could’ve very much faded into the background with so much talent onstage alongside her (Bryce Pinkham, Tracee Chimo, etc.) but she didn’t. Especially her monologue in Act 2. She brought tears to the eyes of audience members around me. You know who faded into the background? Jason Biggs. I’ve seen him onstage once before and he wasn’t as emotionless as he was in this. When he told Heidi that he loved her, I was like, “really? Try acting like it.” I’m convinced he was hired for his name to sell tickets, not his talent. Oh well, it happens.
Tracee Chimo always steals the scene when she’s onstage and it was no different this time. I’m also so happy and thankful that Bryce Pinkham took a leave of absence from Gentleman’s Guide to do this as he was really great. Another stand out for me was Ali Ahn as Susan, one of Heidi’s good girlfriends through the years. I appreciated her portrayal of a strong woman in a male-dominated corporate America (especially in the 80′s).
My only ax to grind with this show might be the fact that she adopts a baby at the end of the show. She’s bucked tradition up until then, so why stop now? But hey, at least she did it on her own terms and without a man.
The Heidi Chronicles says nothing we haven’t heard before but it shows us how little women have achieved since this time and how much work we still have to do.