RBG: Of Many, One

STC-RBG-Of-Many-One-Heather-Mitchell-photo-by-Rene-VaileHeather Mitchell will bring the extraordinary life of Ruth Bader Ginsburg to Sydney Theatre Company’s Wharf Theatre stage this October for the world premiere of acclaimed Australian lawyer-turned-playwright Suzie Miller’s RBG: Of Many, One.

This intimate, one-woman show, directed by Priscilla Jackman (White Pearl), will chart the incredible achievements throughout RBG’s professional life – her historic Supreme Court nomination, fierce advocacy for reproductive rights and serving alongside Clinton, Obama and Trump – and shed light on the woman behind the public figure, from her teenage years in New York to her death in 2020.

Miller, whose play about the legal profession Prima Facie (Griffin Theatre Company) recently had a celebrated run starring Jodie Comer (Killing Eve) on the West End and soon to play Broadway, said she wrote RBG: Of Many, One out of a fascination with the “human fallibility of such a brilliant woman.”

“As an iconic judge and incredible mind, I often felt safe in a world where her voice rang out on behalf of all women,” said Miller. “RBG spoke through the generations – she spoke to and for all women, all over the world. What fascinated me about her was that despite her brilliance, her fallibility humanises her.”

Mitchell, who previously played Catherine McGregor in Jackman’s 2018 STC play Still Point Turning: The Catherine McGregor Story, said it was an “incredible privilege” to be playing such an iconic figure as Ruth Bader Ginsberg.

“She was diminutive in stature but towering in her ideas and courage: within that tiny frame was a powerhouse, a visionary,” said Mitchell. “A one-woman show is a huge task, yet I feel really energised because of Ruth’s unwavering passion and vision for the future.”

“I hope people will leave this show feeling inspired about her, and also about life in general. Ruth offered a sense that anything is possible, she’s an example of what passion, commitment and hard work can achieve,” added Mitchell.

Director Priscilla Jackman says the play is about leadership and that it will give 2022 Australian audiences a chance to “understand the journey of feminism from the perspective of a woman who created so many of the movement’s milestones,” she said.

“It’s a chance for us, to really reflect on what we take for granted in terms of equality in the law and how important it is for us to remain vigilant and mindful of all of the progress that people like RBG made.”

“We see a juxtaposition in the leadership that someone like RBG contributes to the world in the context of her meeting three different Presidents – Clinton, Obama and Trump – over the three parts of the play.”

“By putting her up against these three very iconic male figures, who in themselves have different styles of leadership, we really come to ask a whole manner of questions about leadership as much as gender,” said Jackman.

Director: Priscilla Jackman | Performer: Heather Mitchell | Designer: David Fleischer | Lighting Designer: Alexander Berlage | Composer: Paul Charlier | Assistant Director: Sharon Millerchip | Voice Coach: Jennifer White

RBG: Of Many, One
Wharf 1 Theatre, Hickson Road, Walsh Bay (Sydney)
Season: 4 November – 17 December 2022 (previews: 29 October – 2 November)
Information and Bookings: www.sydneytheatre.com.au

Image: Heather Mitchell in RBG: Of Many, One – photo by Rene Vaile