Madwomen of the West

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Photo: Carol Rosegg Review
Admittedly, Sandra Tsing Loh’s “Madwomen of the West,” now at the Actors Temple Theatre, is not really a play in any structural sense of the word; it’s more like a barely blended mélange of one-liners, mini-TED talks, trenchant monologues, and idle chit-chat (which is fitting, perhaps, since it’s set at a fictional birthday brunch). But it also unquestionably speaks to what’s on many women’s minds – especially those ladies “of a certain age” – including the challenges of raising kids in the age of proper pronouns, the continuing relevance (or not) of Gloria Steinem, the dangers of a long marriage (adultery, alcoholism and boredom), the upside and downside of menopause, and what would really have happened to Mary Richards after age 35.

More importantly, it provides a superb showcase for four actresses we don’t see enough of on stage (and whose characters have been based, in part, on their real-life personality): the amazingly gorgeous Marilu Henner as chipper, ultra-positive wellness guru Zoey; the brilliantly brittle Caroline Aaron as the sharp-tongued school administrator Marilyn; the wonderfully martini-dry Brooke Adams as the seemingly put-together but lost-at-sea ex-lawyer Jules; and the often deadpan Melanie Mayron as the once-renowned artist Claudia, now a Debbie Downer in flannel pajamas (whoops -- it’s a surprise party) whose life ends up looking up! It is a mad, mad, mad, mad world.

By Brian Scott Lipton

Open/Close Dates
Opening 12/4/2023
Closing 12/31/2023

Theatre Info
Actors Temple Theatre
339 West 47th Street
New York, NY 10036