It's the middle of the high-flying 80's in England and Marlene finally has something to celebrate - she's been made Managing Director of Top Girls Employment Agency. But with no friends to speak of, and a past she'd just as soon forget, the guests at her party are a collection of famous women from history. Soon, Marlene discovers that life above the glass ceiling is not all it's cracked up to be. A bold, searing comdey from an Olivier Award-winning playwright whom critics have called "one of the best writers today."
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Caryl Churchill (born 1938 in London, England) is a writer of stage plays known for her use of non-realistic techniques and feminist themes. She is acknowledged as a major playwright in the English language and a leading woman writer. She is classed as a Post-modern playwright due to her themes and techniques such as use of multi-role and fragmented narrative. Her family emigrated to Montreal, Canada, where she attended Trafalgar School for Girls. She returned to England to attend university, and graduated from Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford in 1960 with a degree in English Literature. She also began her career there, writing three plays for performance by student drama groups. She also began to write short radio plays for the BBC. Churchill's basic socialist views are very apparent in the play, which is a critique of the values that most capitalists take for granted. She served as resident dramatist at the Royal Court Theatre from 1974-1975, and later began collaboration with theatre companies such as Joint Stock Theatre Company and Monstrous Regiment (a feminist theatre union) which used an extended workshop period in their development of new plays. In time Churchill's writing became less and less inhibited by realism, and the feminist themes were also developed. Churchill also wrote television plays for the BBC, and those and some of her radio plays were later adapted for the stage.From AudioFile:
When the curtain rises, Marlene has just gotten a promotion and is celebrating with a group of overachieving women of history. Next comes a montage of her at the employment agency where she works. Finally, comes a tense reunion with her sister and the daughter Marlene abandoned. This celebrated allegorical stage play of 1982 presents several difficulties for the audio producer. It requires eight women on mike at once, and much of the dialogue overlaps. Without visual cues, how to keep things clear? It helps to have a terrific cast, such as this one. Unfortunately, the director's focus on his live audience works better for them than for his audiobook listeners, who may experience moments of confusion. Y.R. © AudioFile 2007, Portland, Maine-- Copyright © AudioFile, Portland, Maine
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