The MEN read: THE WOMEN, Claire Boothe Luce - 1930s female cat fighting

  • April 27, 2014 · 3:00 PM
  • This location is shown only to members


Women are invited to attend and watch or listen.

The Women is a comedy of manners by Clare Boothe Luce.

The play is an acerbic commentary on the pampered lives and power struggles of various wealthy Manhattan socialites and up-and-comers and the gossip that propels and damages their relationships. While men frequently are the subject of their lively discussions and play an important role in the action on-stage, they are strictly characters mentioned but never seen.

The original Broadway production, directed by Robert B. Sinclair, opened on December 26, 1936 at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre, where it ran for 657 performances with an all-female cast that included Arlene FrancisIlka Chase, and Marjorie Main.  Claire Boothe Luce was named Woman of the Century by Time Magazine.


Mary: [PLAYED BY NORMA SHEARER IN THE MOVIE]  (Mrs. Haines): middle 30s, upper middle-class housewife, perfect, sweet, a model for other women, married to Stephen Haines with two children (little Mary and little Stephen), demure, faithful, innocent/positive outlook towards marriage 

Crystal: [PLAYED BY JOAN CRAWFORD IN THE MOVIE] middle 20s,  a VAMP, manipulative, a "user",  (single until her marriage to Stephen), no children, lower-class, fragrance salesperson, flirtatious, deceitful, ambitious, manipulative, unfaithful, disrespectful 

Sylvia: [PLAYED BY ROSILAND RUSSELL IN THE MOVIE] Alpha Female, bitchy, scheming, (Mrs. Fowler): 34, upper middle-class housewife, married to Howard Fowler with two children, gossiper, assertive, disloyal, dishonest, blunt, inconsiderate, selfish 

Peggy: [PLAYED BY JOAN FONTAINE IN THE MOVIE] (Mrs. Day): 25, middle-class housewife (she has money but not her husband), married to John Day with no children (but longs for a child), innocent, compliant, awkward, sympathetic 

Nancy Blake: 35, upper middle-class writer, single, possibly bi-sexual (virgin), traveler, blunt, direct, feminist, unemotional 

Edith: (Mrs. Potter): 33/34, upper middle-class housewife, married to Phelps Potter with 4 children, one dimensional, dull, non-confrontational, does not like children, sexual tendencies, static 

Mrs. Morehead: 55, upper middle-class, Mary's mother, presumably a widow, old fashioned/traditional, strict, wise 

Countess De Lage: over-the-top dramatic, on the man-hunt constantly, middle-aged, upper middle-class, divorced four times, outgoing, hopeless romantic

Other Characters: 

Jane Mrs Wagstaff 

First Hairdresser 

Second Hairdresser 

Pedicurist Olga Mud-Mask (Mr. Phipps) 

Euphie Cook (Ingrid) 

Miss Fordyce 

Little Mary 

First Salesgirl 

Second Salesgirl 

First Saleswoman (Miss Shapiro) 

First Model (Miss Myrtle) 

Second Sealeswoman 

Crystal Allen 

Third Saleswoman 

First Fitter 

Corset Model 

Princess Tamara 

Instructress Maggie 

Miss Trimmerback 

Miss Watts 


Miriam Aarons 


First Girl 

Second Girl 

First Woman 

Second Woman 

Sadie Cigarette 

Girl Dowager 


Girl in Distress

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  • Jaime E.

    Such fun!!! I'm glad I got to be a part of this reading. :)

    April 27, 2014

  • Victor C.

    I don't know that I can pass for Joan Fontaine, but since I have a sister named Peggy, I'll give that role a try.

    April 8, 2014

  • Jaime E.

    Cannot wait to see this. :-)

    March 31, 2014

  • Barry

    I'll take a chance a try Crystal.

    1 · March 31, 2014

    • Susan D.

      Oh, you husband robbing bitch, you!! Get out your claws!! (polished nails with "jungle red"

      1 · March 31, 2014

  • Andy T.

    Or perhaps Mrs. Morehead?

    March 12, 2014

  • Andy T.

    John I think it is WONDERFUL you have found your destiny in Mary but don't you think you're a little too...mature, for the role? But anyway darling, what do I know?
    For myself I am humbly willing to take any part that is offered. However, if the Corset Model is still available...?

    March 12, 2014

  • John F.

    I think I was born to play Mary.

    1 · March 12, 2014

  • myles g.

    I want to play Sylvia!!

    March 12, 2014

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