Thursday, October 21, 2010

'Heidi' chronicles evolving roles for women

Director Missy Thibodeaux-Thompson has personal experience with the “The Heidi Chronicles,” the play that opens UIS Theatre’s new season at 7:30 p.m. Friday in the Studio Theatre on the University of Illinois Springfield campus.

Thibodeaux-Thompson said she was in the play in 1994, though for the sake of her actors she doesn’t want to say which characters she played. Then just 5 years old, the play’s ideas were still fresh, perhaps even raw.

“There were many feminist theater critics at the time who felt that it didn’t do — I don’t know how to put this, and I want to be careful so it doesn’t give the ending away — they felt it wasn’t accurately depicting the feminist struggle or the feminist achievement,” Thibodeaux-Thompson said.

“The Heidi Chronicles” follows the title character from her school days in the 1960s, when feminism was on the rise, through a high-powered career as an art historian in the 1980s, when the character is lost personally and has a more nuanced view of the movement.

“The Heidi Chronicles” was featured in an October 21, 2010, article in The State Journal-Register.

Download a PDF of the article