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In The Heidi Chronicles, Heidi Holland comes of age at the dawn of the women’s movement. She and her friends are fighting to “have it all” – careers, love, equal rights, and equal wages. They won, right?

Premiering in 1988, this groundbreaking examination of feminism and its evolution from the 1960s to the 1990s earned both the Tony Award for Best Play and the Pulitzer Prize for Drama. It premiered Off-Broadway at Playwrights Horizons, then transferred to Broadway where it ran over two years. The New York Times called the play “both mirthful and touching. Ms. Wasserstein has always been a clever writer of comedy. This time she has been exceedingly watchful about not settling for easy laughter, and the result is a more penetrating play.”

Northeastern’s production is helmed by guest director Bridget Kathleen O’Leary, also a part-time lecturer in the theatre department. She is the Associate Artistic Director for New Repertory Theatre in Watertown, MA. One of Boston’s most acclaimed young talents, she has directed New Rep’s productions of Muckrackers, Pattern of Life, Lungs, Fully Committed, Collected Stories, DollHouse, boom, Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, and Fool for Love. Other regional directing credits include: Othello at Actor’s Shakespeare Project, Reconsidering Hanna(h) and The Devil’s Teacup at Boston Playwrights’ Theatre; The Other Place for Underground Railway Theatre and the Nora Theater Company

“I love this play because it asks big questions about the role of women in society,” says O’Leary. “There was a real push in the 70’s and 80’s to unite on a common goal, but there were a lot of disagreements about what that should look like.  The play dramatizes that our paths are as individual as we are. Women today, and this is certainly true of the women in the cast, celebrate their uniqueness. I think The Heidi Chronicles is a wonderful investigation of how the women of that generation got us to where we are today.”

Cast member Christie Chen AMD ’18, adds: “In rehearsal, we’ve been discussing what it means to be a feminist, and what it meant to be a feminist 20 years ago. The way that many people view the concept has changed dramatically. Now, most people know that it means that you support the idea that men and women should have equal social, political, and economic rights. In the seventies, many viewed it as ‘You either shave your legs or you don’t.’ You couldn’t say you were a feminist without being called a ‘bra-burner.’ The play highlights changing views of feminism over the years as we follow one woman’s life.”

Wendy Wasserstein wrote many successful plays, including Uncommon Women and Others and The Sisters Rosensweig. She was the first solo woman to win a Tony Award for Best Play. “She was known for being a popular, funny playwright, but she was also a woman and a writer of deep conviction and political activism,” Andre Bishop, Artistic Director of Lincoln Center Theater, said. “In Wendy’s plays women saw themselves portrayed in a way they hadn’t been onstage before — wittily, intelligently and seriously at the same time. We take that for granted now, but it was not the case 25 years ago. She was a real pioneer.” She died in 2006 at the age of 55.

Tickets for NU students are just $5-$8 and can be purchased through myNEU.