Richie Abanes has been a presence in the New York theater community for many years, having first made his mark on the scene as an ensemble member of the original Broadway production of Dreamgirls. He also was seen in the Off-Broadway productions of Pacific Overtures and The Coronation of Poppea. Previous to his Broadway/Off-Broadway appearances, Richie not only toured in the original International/National companies of A Chorus Line, but also performed in various regional theaters in productions that included Hair, You’re a Good Man Charlie Brown, Carousel, and West Side Story. In film/TV, Richie starred as “Anthony” in the PBS Special The Constitution, (hosted by Bill Moyers), and played lead characters in two ABC After School Specials. In the music world, Richie has produced two CDs of his original inspirational music (now distributed by Watchfire Music). As an author, Richie has won two awards as a journalist, having authored/co-authored twenty books dealing with tolerance/ intolerance in America, racism/prejudice/white supremacy, controversial social issues, religious cults, domestic terrorism, western history, and pop culture.
Five Women is about women—real women, living real lives, in real relationships, using real dialogue. It spans approximately two years in the lives of five women doing their best to navigate life in New York. The play, which is moved forward using both heartbreak and humor, primarily deals with issues that are relevant to the general public (familial bonds, honest communication, forgiveness, love, hope, life/death, grief, suffering, loss, heartbreak). At the same time, Five Women handles subjects that are of special importance to women (mother-daughter relationships, sisterhood, sexual harassment/assault, unrealistic media images of beauty, and eating disorders). Also presented throughout Five Women is the timely subject of LGBTQ relationships, which is something that still must be positively covered in artistic creations to further educate the public and dispel harmful myths and stereotypes about those in the LGBTQ community.