Emma Newman staff writer
Ruth Bader Ginsburg is the first truly iconic Supreme Court Justice, as shown by her nickname “The Notorious RBG”, but she may have never made it to the highest court in America without Sandra Day O’Connor. The production “Sisters in Law,” which is shown at the Wallis Annenberg Theater, is a two-woman show about the relationship between these two powerful women.
The show is educational and touching, but painful to watch at times in terms of acting.
The production teaches the audience about the history of the Supreme Court by talking about important cases like Roe v. Wade, which made abortion legal, and Safford Unified School District v. Redding, which said that strip-searching a 13-year-old girl for ibuprofen was a violation of the fourth amendment.
Through the exploration of these cases, it was easy to see the personality and strategy of both O’Connor, played by Stephanie Faracy, and Ginsburg, played by Tovah Feldshuh. The production also highlights the substantiality of each woman’s work on the Supreme Court. Most importantly, the writers showcase these cases in informative yet entertaining ways, which helps the show stay interesting and memorable.
The best aspect of the show was the emotional appeal that ensues when telling this complicated two-woman story. The play’s screenplay illustrates the conflict between the two justices, but at its core, the performance showed how two powerful and fiercely different people can influence each other.
Even when the two women were arguing, they would attempt to see the other’s side, which sent a powerful message of the respect Ginsburg and O’Connor had for each other. Even though those moments were moving, the best example of the dynamic and heartwarming scenes between the justices was when Ginsburg admitted at the end that she has never gone a day without thinking about O’Connor. It tugged at all the right heartstrings, and it showed the audience that even this conflicted friendship had pure moments of love.
Despite the seemingly brilliant plot in the production, the actual acting was unprofessional and unimpressive. Feldush’s portrayal of Ginsburg seemed forced and unnatural in both her tone and body language. Faracy’s performance as Sandra Day O’Connor was slightly more impressive, but the role was still not memorable or realistic.
The main reason why the actresses were so disappointing was that neither of them delivered their lines perfectly. In fact, they both stumbled over their lines multiple times. The worst blunders were the two times that the Feldush accidentally called Sandra Day O’Connor “Ruth.” For an actress to botch her line in such a noticeable way is difficult to accomplish once, but it was simply shocking that she managed to do it twice. The lack of clarity and accuracy of their lines was so noticeable that it honestly made the whole production seem more like a child’s show than an adult play.
The show itself is great, but the flawed acting took so much away from the production. However, if you can excuse the poor acting in exchange for a beautiful set, information on two of the most influential Supreme Court Justices in history and a moving relationship between two polar opposites, this show is a must-see.
If you’re one of those people, the show will only be at the Wallis until October 13th, so if you want to see the show, click here to see the show times. The tickets are selling fast and some of the nights are sold out, so don’t wait if you want to buy tickets to the production.
Highlights rates this play: 3.5/5