The Heidi Chronicles

The Heidi Chronicles

The Heidi Chronicles
By Wendy Wasserstein
Directed by Vicki Wicks
Starring Marcie Schwalm, BeeJay Clinton and Marcus Davila
Breakthrough theatre, Winter Park FL

What defines you? Your job? The people you hang out with? The social trends of the day and how you adopt them? All these possibility are tested and found wanting by Heidi Holland (Schwalm). At the high school dance she reads a book; thus she’s a wallflower. In college she’s hangs with a woman’s group energized by uber-lesbian Fran (Lauren Senninger); now she’s a feminist. When occasional boyfriend Scoop (Davila) marries another woman, she’s been “left on the shelf.” Next she publishes a book on female art history;side this makes her an elitist. A girl can never get a break. But in all these situations, she has wants and fears, goals and ambitions, and as for all of us they can shift with time and place and surroundings. By the last scene she adopts the ultimate feminine role: a mother who has held on to a few good friends and made a few solid enemies.

Through all the trials Schwalm remains vulnerable and likeable. The two men in her life are both more intellectual than physical lovers: Peter (Clinton) is her best gay friend for life; he’s always there when they argue and he lets her win most of the time. Scoop marries another but looks like he’s always ready for something on the side; he’s the ultimate assimilated Jew who makes it big in business but remains empty inside. Their best scene comes in an unlikely TV interview with Heidi, Scoop, and Peter. The guys answer all the questions Ms. Perky TV Hostess asks Holly; afterward they both declare she gave the best interview of the morning. While this show has a distinct 1980’s vibe it still resonates; and Ms. Schwalm’s interpretation sells the package.

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