Five Women: A Play by Richie Abanes

The time has come for women to have a greater voice in the world, especially through the arts. And I believe that my new play—Five Women—will at last give some much-needed volume to that  voice.


The play spans the years 2009 to 2014 in the lives of five women, who are doing their best to negotiate modern life in New York City. The play, which bounces between heartbreaking and humorous, covers many important issues: familial obligations; broken relationships; spirituality; unrealistic expectations; friendship; destructive media images of women; love; social pressures; past mistakes; forgiveness; sexual harassment; LGBT issues; sexuality; tolerance/intolerance; alcohol abuse; and grief. Their interactions are not only thought-provoking, but inspiring. The overarching themes of the play are healing, love, and forgiveness, which are achieved by all the women:

Marilyn, a mid-40s New York attorney, a hard-worker with a heart of gold and an overwhelming urge to help people by fixing all of their problems (sometimes making the wrong choices in her efforts to do so).  
Lauren, Marilyn's baby sister, a mid-20s woman living out her dream as a struggling street artist. Although  she knows that she has great talent, she is simultaneously beset by artistic insecurities, which are intensified by the anger she feels toward her disapproving mother, from whom she is estranged.
Chandra, an early-20s high fashion supermodel, who has lived with Marilyn for over five years. She is an interesting young woman, who excels at getting reactions out of people by using overly sexualized remarks and wild behavior. Although this gives her the appearance of being rather worldly and hard-edged, she is still in many ways a frail and naive young girl, who is still trying to discover not only what life is all about, but how she fits into it.
Elaine, a mid-60’s, wealthy, thrice-divorced, opinionated, and set-in-her-ways matriarch.  She’s an attractive, smart, and shrewd entrepreneur, but has grown not only old fashioned, but rather narrow-minded as the years have passed. She has a pushy exterior, yet beneath it all is a wounded woman, who has suffered and sacrificed in ways unknown to her daughters. There is far more to Elaine than meets the eye.
Grace, an early 30’s, Asian-American, who is an attorney at Marilyn’s law firm; an attorney personally mentored by Marilyn. She is spunky, happy, nurturing, generous, optimistic, and open. She is also a lesbian and the former lover of Chandra, whom she dated for about a year, until they both saw they got along best as just friends. She is the most spiritually conscious of the five women, is dedicated to healthy eating, advocates being as “nice” as possible, and goes to an inclusive church.

This gofundme campaign has been initiated to raise the funds I need to finance the first public production of the play on July 9, 13, and 15 at the well-known New York Theater Festival (2018 Summerfest) in New York. I am currently in pre-production, which means your funds will begin to be used as soon as they are received. Your generous donations will go toward: talent stipends, advertising, costumes, set design, rental needs, audition costs, props, art design, lighting/sound, and rehearsal space. I would be so grateful for ANY amount you could give to fund this extraordinarily important work of theater, which also happens to be my very first play. Thank you in advance for your support, encouragement, and generoisty. Even if you can't donate, please come see the play. Tickets can be purchased at the link given above at the beginning of this section.  



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  • Laura Laughlin 
    • $500 
    • 34 mos
  • John Osborn  
    • $500 
    • 34 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • $100 
    • 34 mos
  • Dennis Hall 
    • $25 
    • 34 mos
  • Christina Metrailer 
    • $30 
    • 35 mos
See all


Richie Abanes 
New York, NY
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