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A Woman Of The World

From 29 member  reviews
Members say: Great acting, Absorbing, Great writing, Enchanting, Entertaining

About the show

Kathleen Chalfant stars as Emily Dickinson’s posthumous editor Mabel Loomis Todd in Pulitzer Prize finalist Rebecca Gilman’s world premiere play. More…

From the show:

Best known as Emily Dickinson’s posthumous editor, Mabel Loomis Todd is a woman of the world. Priding herself on being an inspired conversationalist, she invited scandal by enjoying a glass of wine in mixed company, and she certainly wasn’t afraid to expose her ankles in a dress. Now in her 70s and living on Hog Island in Maine, the accomplished journalist and naturalist regales us with tales of her storied life, spilling secrets and revealing the true nature of her relationship with one of America’s most celebrated poets.

Pulitzer Prize finalist Rebecca Gilman’s world premiere play is brought to the stage in this insightful and impassioned tour-de-force performance by one of theater’s most beloved performers, Kathleen Chalfant.

Member Reviews (29)


Great acting, Absorbing, Great writing, Enchanting, Entertaining
Avg Score

Enchanting, Masterful, Great acting, Ambitious

See it if You want a very well written interesting play. Keeps your attention throughout.

Don't see it if If you do not like solo shows. To know about Emily Dickinson is not important.

Brittle, Intelligent, Indulgent, Great writing, Great acting

See it if Editor steps out from the shadows and really, really enjoys the sunshine once removed from her client. Assured acting style.

Don't see it if Brittle content and acting. Actor relishes hitting her mark. Big ego fills tiny space very quickly.

Great writing, Great acting, Funny, Delightful, Absorbing

See it if Kathleen Chalfant is amazing. Her performance was absolutely incredible.

Don't see it if you don't like solo shows on simple but adequate sets.

Also The play was very charming and Chalfant was a delight. If you want to ... Read more Read less

Good start, Intimate setting, Somewhat entertaining, Disappointing

See it if Chalfont does a masterful acting job; you're amazed by actors who can keep a one person play moving and remember all their lines.

Don't see it if you expect the play to be about Dickinson; don't like one person plays; Mabel Loomis Todd is not very likeable/sympathetic; nothing happens.

Intelligent, Great acting, Enchanting, Delightful, Absorbing

See it if you are a fan of one of our national treasures, Kathleen Chalfant, or Emily Dickinson. A delightful one-woman show!

Don't see it if you do not like one-person plays. However, Ms. Chalfant gives a master class in great acting.

Must see, Great acting, Entertaining, Enchanting, Delightful

See it if you want to see Kathleen Chalfont at her very best. She is a marvel. I won't give it away, but a knowledge of Emily D is not needed at all

Don't see it if you absolutely hate one woman shows regardless of their quality and subject matter. This one was entertaining from beginning to end.

Also I have been told this show is sold out for the run. There may be some ... Read more Read less

Great acting, Chalfant is perfection, Script is a little thin

See it if you love great acting.Chalfant is as good as it gets.Set is excellent.Script is a little thin.I'd like more story, less background.

Don't see it if you want a big fat show.This is a beautiful small piece.Perfect for 59E's black box theatre.Chalfant is amazing.So fun to be so close to her

Professional, Common biography, Myopic, Overrated

See it if u think it’s cute and not insufferable that Mabel thinks the flowers bloom just for her. You’d hang w/ Gladys @ Waverly Gallery when younger

Don't see it if you’re under 60. Aging, class-conscious braggart dishing about her dead lover who is not Emily Dickinson.

Also Entirely fine solo show. It just didn’t mesh w/ any of my interests. L... Read more Read less

Felt long at 90 minutes, Without passion, Mannered

See it if Kathleen Chalfont really is a treasure but she is squandered here. The information imparted lacks insight.

Don't see it if You want to learn anything about Emily Dickinson or her publisher. The latter apparently fabricates a whole story then exposes her lies.

Also As presented here, the editor never even met Emily D and her whole cla... Read more Read less

Masterful, 3-d character, Great writing, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if You are a fan of Chalfant, love Emily Dickinson, appreciate out-of-the box 19th century women, or relish great storytelling.

Don't see it if you do not like one-actor shows or a biographical story set entirely on one woman.

Also Kathleen Chalfant is luminous. The opportunity to be a few feet away f... Read more Read less

Absorbing, Riveting, Great writing, Great acting

See it if you, like I, are a devoted fan of Kathleen Chalfant you will not be disappointed at her riveting rendition of this true story

Don't see it if you are not interested in one woman shows in tiny theaters

Entertaining, Absorbing, Relevant, Slow, Great acting

See it if to see a great performance by Kathleen Chalfant and learn about the life of Mabel Loomis Todd.

Don't see it if you want to see a traditional play. This is a solo show in which a speech is delivered, so it's more of a well-delivered speech than a play.

Romantic, Intelligent, Great writing, Great acting, Enchanting

See it if you love the craft of acting. Chalfant is wonderful, as is the character she inhabits. An entrancing performance.

Don't see it if you need razzle dazzle to be entertained. This is intimate, personal and engrossing. It is intelligent theater by a true craftsman.

Dickinson's editor comes alive, Dirty laundry aired, History of mabel loomis todd

See it if you love literary history, Emily Dickinson or Chalfant, like 1-man shows & don't mind hagiography. Fascinating history, though.

Don't see it if Expect to hear much about E. Dickinson. Dislike 1-man shows, or think 75 minutes on a single self-centered figure a bit much.

Also Great acting.... Read more Read less


See it if You're a big fan of the actress.

Don't see it if You want a more compelling play.

Entertaining, Great writing, Great acting, Enchanting, Absorbing

See it if U enjoy one woman shows performed by a great actor with great writing in an absorbing, delightful story in a small venue.

Don't see it if U prefer more performers on stage, larger venues or musicals.

Funny, Intelligent, Great acting

See it if for a masterful performance by Kathleen Chalfant in an intimate setting, on a spare but evocative set.

Don't see it if you’re so fed up with real-life narcissistic characters, you don’t even want to spend any time with one onstage.

Masterful, Intelligent, Great writing, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if Anyone who wants to see an interestingly,well written piece exquisitely acted with a heart-warming and revealing plot.

Don't see it if If one does not like one person shows or Emily Dickinson doesn't interest.

Well-told story, Humorous, Entertaining, Different

See it if Enjoy biographies especially in the hands of a true pro who keeps us invested throughout. We see her truth and are given the truth as well.

Don't see it if One woman shows, even about a person considered ahead of her time, not for you. Think it's sold out. Try checking the day you'd like to go.

Exquisite, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if You are a Chalfant fan and if you have some knowledge of Emily Dickinson's history...(this helps.)

Don't see it if You do not enjoy one woman performances and have no interest late 19th century poetry

Also Chalfant is superb and the small venue makes the experience even more ... Read more Read less

Intelligent, Great acting

See it if Beautifully acted one woman show about dwelling next door to celebrity, Todd revealed and revealing.

Don't see it if If the subject is of limited interest, Todd's life and not Dickinson's.

Must see, Entertaining, Absorbing, Great writing, Great acting

See it if you want to experience great acting.

Don't see it if you can not appreciate small intimate dramas.

Also I found Kathleen Chalfant stupendous. A truly great evening in the the... Read more Read less

Pleasant enough, mildly engaging, there is no there there

See it if you like kathleen chalfant, like one-woman shows, and have more than a casual interest in emily dickenson.

Don't see it if you are looking for something exciting and dramatic. skip it if you hate one-person shows.

Also kathleen chalfant is always an engaging actress, but this slight play ... Read more Read less

Entertaining, Absorbing, Great acting

See it if you like good acting. Kathleen Chalfont is really good, but I think she missed the mark on this one.

Don't see it if if you don't like hearsay and/or innuendo. It was hard for me to believe lots of the story and I felt the delivery was a little off.

Great acting, Absorbing

See it if Kathleen Chalfant is amazing

Don't see it if If you don't like one person showhsi

November 1st, 2019
"‘A Woman of the World’ Dwells in Possibility: Rebecca Gilman’s one-woman show stars Kathleen Chalfant as Mabel Loomis Todd, who burnished herself with Emily Dickinson’s celebrity."
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November 1st, 2019
"If you're a Kathleen Chalfant fan, her considerable charms will most likely see you through 'A Woman of the World.' If you have a taste for literary gossip, the script certainly has some jaw-droppers to share."
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October 30th, 2019
4/5 Stars "Kathleen Chalfant is flawless. Whether the pleasure of Mabel Loomis Todd's company was enjoyed by all back then is up for debate, but there's no denying the pleasure of Chalfant's performance."
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October 30th, 2019
3/5 Stars: "Rebecca Gilman made her first big splash with 'Spinning into Butter,' one of the most fearless and prophetic plays about racial tensions and political correctness. Woman of the World is not nearly as provocative or ambitious, although Chalfant paints a compelling picture of Emily Dick...
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