Marilyn Monroe, This Is Your Life; One-Woman Show Offers Memorable Portrayal of an Icon

Article excerpt

Byline: CHARLIE PATTON

It begins and ends with her naked beneath a satin sheet.

In between, she goes through five costume changes while she talks about her life and loves in that familiar sexy, breathy, little girl voice.

And, throughout it all, it really does seem to be Marilyn Monroe up there on stage in the Museum of Contemporary Art Jacksonville.

"Marilyn: Forever Blonde," a one-woman show about the life of America's most enduring sex symbol, is being presented five times a week through March 7.

The play stars Sunny Thompson, an actress who bears a stunning resemblance to the mature Marilyn.

She has the same tousled blond hair, red lips, alluring smile. The same voluptuous, breathtaking body. The same voice, not only when speaking but also when singing about a dozen songs.

But what she does isn't an impersonation. It's a performance.

We believe Marilyn might have behaved this way during a session posing for a young photographer as she drank a bottle of champagne, changed clothes regularly and talked about her life.

The play was written by sunny Thompson's husband, Greg Thompson, and, according to the program, everything Marilyn says during the play she actually said during her life.

Over the public address system, we also hear the words of the unnamed photographer and of various people in Marilyn's life, notably a string of husbands and lovers including Joe DiMaggio and Arthur Miller.

The Marilyn we see and hear is smart and funny, not just sexy, not just the "a dumb blonde who couldn't act" as she complains Hollywood stereotyped her. …