Many women have a black dress in their closets. It’s often the go-to dress for all occasions. It’s good for weddings, holiday parties, even funerals.
The versatile piece of clothing is also the inspiration behind the musical comedy “Little Black Dress,” which is currently on tour with a performance set for the Dothan Opera House on July 16. For show creator and writer Danielle Trzcinski, the little black dress – or LBD – represents more than just a wardrobe essential.
“It represents that you’re strong and confident and powerful, but ultimately, at the end of the day, no matter how wonderful the dress makes you feel, it’s the woman inside the dress,” Trzcinski said.
“Little Black Dress” started touring last year with a performance in Tampa, Florida, but it was in development for about four years.
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The idea was born when Trzcinski, also an actress, was touring with “Spank! A Fifty Shades of Grey Parody” along with actress Amanda Barker. While touring, the two realized there was an audience hungry for a night out – women. So, they decided to write their own play with smart, funny and strong female characters. Part comedy, part musical and part improvisation, “Little Black Dress” was the result of their collaboration.
Four actors play more than 20 roles during the performance, which is intended to be a ladies night out for those in the audience. And while the audience typically represents all ages, there is adult content in the play, along with some audience participation. Women are encouraged to wear their own little black dresses to the performance, and Trzcinski said the variety of dresses never ceases to surprise her.
“It’s really cool to see because you’ll look out into the audience and it will be a sea of black dresses,” she said. “No matter how many cities we play, how many venues, I don’t think I’ve ever seen the same black dress. There’s always something a little different whether it’s lace or a ribbon or a piece of jewelry.
“Little Black Dress” opens with two friends – Mandy and Dee – buying their first black dress. As the play progresses, the two friends wear their black dresses for a multitude of life’s big moments – first job interview, a first date, a first funeral. The friends reunite in their little black dresses even as they are following different paths in life – one is married with a family; the other is single. The bigger point of the comedy, Trzcinski said, is that no matter how different their lives become, maintaining their friendship becomes more important with time.
“It just shows that you have these friends you grew up with and as you get older it’s harder to stay in touch and see one another,” she said. “What we learn is that even though they’re living these different paths how important it is to keep these women in our lives.”