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Yearning, friendship and romance

Belfry Theatre opens season with Intimate Apparel

A “beautiful and moving story” is playing out at the Belfry Theatre as award-winning playwright Lynn Nottage’s Intimate Apparel takes the stage.

The show runs until October 16.

As the story unfolds, it’s 1905 New York and Esther specializes in creating exquisite corsets for society ladies on Fifth Avenue and prostitutes in the Tenderloin. Tired of watching other women in Mrs. Dickson’s boarding house marry and move on, illiterate Esther, with the help of one of her wealthy clients, enters into a romantic correspondence with George, a labourer working on the Panama Canal.

Directed by Nigel Shawn Williams, Intimate Apparel stars Jenny Brizard (Esther), Lucinda Davis (Mrs. Dickson), Melissa Taylor (Mrs. Van Buren), Matthew Gorman (Mr. Marks), Amira Anderson (Mayme), and Matthew G. Brown (George).

Nottage is an American playwright whose work focuses on the experience of working class people, particularly African American working class people. She was the first (and remains the only) woman to have won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama two times.

Nottage is the recipient of a MacArthur “Genius” Fellowship and was included in Time magazine’s 2019 list of the 100 Most Influential People.

“This is such a beautiful and moving story!” says the Belfry’s Michael Shamata. “Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Lynn Nottage looked at a photograph of an anonymous Black woman and decided to give her a history. This play is full of yearning, friendship and romance. And I am so thrilled to welcome back director Nigel Shawn Williams, who created last season’s production of Serving Elizabeth.”

Intimate Apparel will be performed for in-person audiences now until October 16 with simultaneous live stream broadcasts from October 4

to 9.