I’m stealing another reviewers phrase: “Gutsy and Glorious”! From the moment Brenda Varda glided on stage in a silver brocade babydoll minidress, and belted out the song “I’m Your Goddess” I was hooked, and loved every minute of this solo show.
Though I am not a “fashionista” I do dig watching Project Runway and read an occasional Vogue, so I am not immune to fashion’s siren song. Brenda gives us not only a humorous look at the “nine dresses” she bought and never wore, but the reason behind the purchases. She gives us historical tidbits about fashion’s history and finally an indictment of the pursuit of the “perfect outfit”.
Such clever songs, I might have to buy the CD. I loved “Dressing Room Breakdown” and the song about haute couture. Her story about her encounter with the Rodeo Drive fashion zombies was scary, funny, eye opening and enlightening. I loved how she wrapped it all up and made a case for just being yourself and not following any brand. The ending felt honest and earned and was just right.
“Nine Dresses” is somewhat similar to a Broadway show I loved called “Love, Loss and What I Wore” (adapted by Nora & Delia Ephron from the book of the same name) EXCEPT Brenda’s songs lift her piece to the heavens.
I loved it so much, in fact, that I’d love to see a full-on musical of the material. The show could be “bigger” with more characters. Brenda is such a wonderful lyricist and composer, I could listen to her clever lyrics all day long.
What I didn't like
I often couldn’t hear the lyrics of the songs which were very witty. And some songs may have gone on a little too long, but this did not disturb my total enjoyment of the show.
My overall impression
Extremely clever, witty, fun and brave (she wears an amazing undergarment through much of the show). Terrific songs. The dresses Brenda had in her closet but never wore are so great. What I loved about the show is that it was not just the obvious statement about how being a slave to fashion is superficial, but it goes deeper into the meaning of self. Loved it. Recommend.