Dear Shirley is an intimate story of the unraveling of a woman’s eight-year marriage to a man, and the blossoming of her new relationship with a woman, as told through a series of letters to a cherished friend. Based on the memoir by acclaimed photographer Hinda Schuman that uses her unflinchingly personal images to document her life in the early 1980’s, this new musical offers a raw but often comical look at friendship, love, loyalty, and change. In her letters to Shirley, Hinda is hilariously self-deprecating and heartbreakingly vulnerable, searching for guidance, consolation, and encouragement as she stumbles toward finding her truth.
This song occurs right after Hinda discovers that her husband Jeremy is having an affair with one of the patients in his therapy practice. Hinda tells him that she wants nothing to do with him, but when he breaks down in apologetic sobbing and promises to change, she reluctantly agrees to go to couple’s counseling as a last resort. But Jeremy’s insistence on choosing male therapists – colleagues of his, no less – leaves Hinda wondering what she’s gotten herself into.
Vocals: Vivienne Cleary, James Donegan, and Patrick Gallagher
Recording Engineer: MP Kuo
Photography by Hinda Schuman, from her book Dear Shirley, published by Daylight Books
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