“Bitch” hits the stage

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March 11th, 2011

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Omaha, NE – One little play in town has been stirring up a lot of conversation, and it’s all because of one word.

A word is a word, and obviously it can represent several meanings. But for an expletive or a curse word, there’s always that sharp sting to it as it’s spoken. For one play in Omaha, that sting has also translated into a lot of buzz. Around town, poster boards of the five-letter word written in large, bold white font have both aroused curiosity and confusion, and the accompanying words perception, reality, and execution aren’t giving too much away either. So what’s the name of the play you might ask? It’s Bitch.

The poster for "Bitch" depicts the four main characters: Marie Antoinette, Ann Askew, Mary Seratz, and Mata Seratz. (Photo credit Jennifer Pool Design)

Artistic Director Jenny Pool said it wasn’t always the intention of the playwrights to use the controversial name. In fact, it really just came out of the blue.

“There was sort of a silence after it was said,” she said. “Maybe it was just a joke…Then everyone started nodding their head, and then it became, “Yea, no, we actually should call it that.”

Pool said the play focuses on four women, each having left their own unique mark on history. These women include Marie Antoinette, Ann Askew, Mary Seratz, and Mata Hari. For the play’s purposes, there’s a concentration on how the women react to persecution. Ultimately, their strength to stand up against it leads to their executions.

“There’s all these really black and white notions of who they are,” Pool said. For “a lot of them, it’s really just not like that. Their stories are not black and white. Their stories really need to be examined … in the context of how that happened. When it comes down to it, the primary thing that got them in trouble … was the fact that they broke the code. Women were supposed to be a certain kind of thing, women were supposed to act a certain kind of way, the rules they were born into, they were supposed to follow a certain set of rules. And they weren’t really interested in following those rules.”

The play will debut with a late night showing beginning at 11 pm on March 18th at the Bluebarn Theatre in Omaha.

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