From the Arena Stage (Washington, DC) blog, about two new plays that have opened based on the life of Emilie du Chatelet:
Emilie is everywhere
by Janine Sobeck
This past weekend I attended the Pacific Playwrights Festival, hosted by South Coast Rep in Costa Mesa. A great weekend full of new play enthusiasts celebrating the next chapter in American playwriting.
Among the works offered (and let me tell you, they ran the full spectrum of styles, subject matter, and languages) was South Coast Rep’s production of Emilie by Lauren Gunderson. Yup, it was based on Emilie du Chatelet, the same woman who inspired the writing of Karen Zacarias Legacy of Light which will be opening here next week. Talk about synergy. Both plays are commissions, started around the same time, and are premiering within weeks of each other. And both plays are truly unique. It was absolutely intriguing to sit in the audience and watch the woman (as well as the men in her life) that I have gotten to know so well through all the research, drafts and rehearsals portrayed through a different artistic vision. In talking with fellow PPF attendees, Emilie has captured their interest, leaving a strong fascination about this intelligent and enchanting woman that very few people know about. I hope that some of them will get to see Karen’s play, allowing them the opportunity to continue to expand their vision of who she was and what she did.
I think Emilie would be very intrigued…and very pleased.