“Theater is storytelling,” says director Libby Oberlin, describing the conspicuously non-theatrical approach she’s taken to staging Sonoma Arts Live’s latest production, “Love, Loss and What I Wore.”
“So the way we’re presenting it,” she says, “is a celebration of the art and tradition of on-stage storytelling.”
Written by the sister-sister team of Norah Ephron (“When Harry Met Sally”) and Delia Ephron, the play was a huge hit off-Broadway in 2009, where it became the second longest running show in the history of New York’s Westside Theater.
“In the off-Broadway run,” says Oberlin, “five actresses stood at music stands, with their scripts, and took turns telling the stories of different women, and the memories that came from various pieces of clothing. You wouldn’t think that would work, as a theater piece, but when you have the right five actresses, playing characters that are big and bold, that’s all you need.”
After initially considering taking a more traditional approach to staging the show, which is basically a series of short vignettes and inner monologues, Oberlin eventually decided to stick with the less-is-more “in concert” style that proved so popular in New York, though with a few additional twists.
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