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Women's world

Wendy Wasserstein, who died far too young in 2006 at the age of 55, was America's foremostdramatist of feminism. (For reasons as complex as her plays, it wouldn't be quite right to call her a "feminist playwright.")

Her play "The Sisters Rosensweig," a cutting comic look at the lives of three middle-aged sisters, has been widely produced since its debut in 1992, including an acclaimed 2006 production by the Jewish Repertory Theatre of Western New York. Her earlier play, "The Heidi Chronicles," which follows a young woman's journey through and eventual disenchantment with the feminist movement from high school through adulthood, won the Pulitzer Prize for drama in 1989.

Wasserstein's 2005 play "Third" takes one last hard look at the complicated and rapidly shifting role of women in society today -- among many other issues -- as memories from the height of the feminist movement linger. The local premiere of the play opens at 8 tonight in the Kavinoky Theatre (D'Youville College, 295 Connecticut St.), where it runs through Feb. 6. It stars Eileen Dugan as a professor at a liberal arts college and Patrick Cameron as her student, whom she accuses of plagiarism. Saul Elkin, Anne Roaldi and Colleen Gaughan also appear, with Peter Palmisano directing.

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-- Colin Dabkowski

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