A new Play
by Julie S.Halpern*
Love Street Theatre proudly presents Diminished Fifth, a new play about women who were blacklisted.
Producers Club Theatres,
358 W. 44th St. NYC
June 22-July 3 2011.
All seats $18.00
Last year marked the 60th anniversary of the original blacklist document “Red Channels.” This small pamphlet ignited a firestorm of mostly unfounded accusations which continued unchecked for years. Individuals identified as Communists, sympathizers or “fellow travelers” soon found their professional and personal lives in chaos, and many never fully recovered. Illness, substance abuse, shattered families and even suicide became the norm for many formerly successful artists and writers. One third of these artists were women.
Most material about this period focuses on Hollywood, and more specifically on men. While their suffering and that of their families should never be ignored or minimized, little has been written about blacklisted women, particularly those who made their careers in New York. While the Broadway community was certainly more congenial to blacklisted artists than Hollywood, many individuals believed a “graylist” was in practice. The majority of blacklisted women found themselves unexpectedly out of work, and were never able to fully reclaim their careers.
Diminished Fifth brings five high profile women together in a fictionalized setting. The events depicted here are historically documented, but certain details of the women’s relationships come from the imagination of the playwright.
Experience the personal and professional struggles of celebrated wit Dorothy Parker, writer Lillian Hellman, actress and broadcaster Jean Muir, director/actress Margaret Webster and writer/civil rights activist Eslanda Robeson as they find their reputations and personal freedom compromised almost overnight.
While the accusations leveled at these individuals seem ridiculous to us today, it could certainly happen again. Diminished Fifth urges us to realize that no matter how often a lie is spoken it is still a lie. Sadly, the fears of many people, no matter how unfounded created a firestorm that took decades to put out.
Please join us at Diminished Fifth
Opening night is June 22@8pm, continuing through July 3.
All seats are $18.00.
Please purchase tickets www.theatermania.com
or call 212-352-3101.
Elaine LeGaro *as Margaret Webster
Mary McGloin *as Jean Muir
Ronalda Ay Nicholas* as Eslanda Robeson
Jacquelyn Poplar*as Dorothy Parker
Stacey Scotte* as Lillian Hellman
Our production Staff
John Simmons-Production Stage Manager
Seth Weine-Set Design
Maria Giorgio-Costume, Makeup and Hair Design
Alison May-Light Design
Jay Reisberg-Sound Design
Jewelry Design-Joanne Rogers
Bintu Conteh-Production Intern
Directed by Julie S. Halpern
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