JCC CenterStage production to highlight equality for all

Messenger Post Media

JCC CenterStage will present “Gloria: A Life” on Oct. 10-25 via Zoom to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the women’s right to vote.

Gloria Steinem first raised her voice five decades ago as co-founder of Ms. Magazine and as an undercover reporter posing as a Playboy Bunny.

The JCC’s regional premiere production chronicles her crusade and the work of her contemporaries in the 1960s. Seven local actors illustrate how this writer, championing equality for all, became the leader of the Women’s Movement.

The play offers insights into Steinem’s childhood through her accomplishments to change the status and role of women worldwide. Woven throughout her journey for equality are her intersections and connections with leaders of different social justice movements, including Civil Rights and anti-Vietnam War activism, the battle over Roe vs. Wade, Black Lives Matter, Second Wave Feminism, gay rights, #MeToo, Times Up, tribal rights, and minority unemployment.

Written by playwright Emily Mann, of the McCarter Theatre Center, the all-female cast and crew are directed by Lindsay Warren Baker. Erin-Kate Howard plays the titular role.

“‘Gloria: A Life’ is the perfect piece to work on in the time of COVID-19 and in the current sociopolitical climate,” Baker said. “It provides everyone, “We the People,” an opportunity to think about the state of equality in America. The play causes, dare I say requires, one to consider their relationship with a variety of ‘isms’ — sexism, racism, classism, etc. — and what it means to be a feminist. Where did we start? Where have we been? Where are we now? And where are we going? Gloria once said, ‘history is not the past.’ Gloria inspires us to ask, how will we forge the future?”

Each show will include a talking circle led by local community leaders and activists affiliated with social justice organizations, including the Victory Institute, Levine Center to End Hate, Rochester Latino Theatre Co. and Planned Parenthood.

Shows are scheduled for 8 p.m. on Saturdays, Oct. 10-24; 2 p.m. on Sundays, Oct. 11-25; and 7 p.m. on Thursdays, Oct. 15-22. Tickets cost $20 each or $35 for a household. Call (585) 461-2000 or visit jcccenterstage.org for information.