Based on a true story, and inspired by interviews conducted by the playwright over several years, I Am My Own Wife tells the fascinating tale of Charlotte von Mahlsdorf. Born in Berlin as a biological male named Lothar Berfelde, Charlotte corrected what she considered to be a mistake of nature at the age of 15 and adopted female dress and deportment. Despite the risks involved, she openly flouted rigid gender norms by dressing as a woman under two of the most repressive totalitarian regimes in history: Nazi Germany and the Communist East Germany.
“In an age where politicians still routinely decry homosexuality on the evening news,” says playwright Doug Wright, “and “fag” remains the most stinging of all playground epithets, Charlotte’s dogged insistence on her own sexuality could prove downright curative, an antidote for a community too often besieged by public condemnation and internalized self-loathing.”
Director Rebecca O’Leary describes the play as, “an exquisitely written and intensely personal story of survival, and the search for self.” As a one-man show, “it demands a great deal of its actor, and Gettysburg Stage is lucky to have an actor of Eric Jones caliber to make this story come to life.”