She found a mystery photo and went digging…

A photo of Lynn Nottage

Lynn Nottage, playwright of Intimate Apparel, on stage
at The Lyric Stage Company of Boston from
Feb. 13th – Mar. 14th. 

When Intimate Apparel playwright Lynn Nottage was cleaning out her grandmother’s house, she discovered an old photograph of her great-great grandmother.

She started at the New York Public Library and what she uncovered about her family history was woven into her play Intimate Apparel.

The photo was a mystery and Nottage was determined to find out more about “this woman who was part of the fabric of my life, but who was very much a mystery to me.”
All she did know was that her great-grandmother was a seamstress in New York and that she had married a Barbadian immigrant. From there, she lept into discovery.

Read Nottage comment on this family mystery and how it led to the imagined life of Esther, the shy but proud seamstress at the center of Intimate Apparel. 

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The Intimate apparel poster, with a mannequin in the background