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A Story of Toni Wolff and Emma Jung, a play by Elizabeth Clark Stern,
with Rikki Ricard as Emma Jung (left) and Elizabeth as Toni Wolff 

The year is 1910. The work of Sigmund Freud, and his heir-apparent, Carl Jung, are transforming the way the world thinks about human nature and the inner recesses of the mind. It is a time of experimentation, expansion, and new frontiers of intellectual power. Into the heart of this world steps a 22 year old woman, a new patient of the now famous analyst, Carl Jung. Toni Wolff brings a new voice into this creative vortex that also includes Jung’s wife, Emma. The three of them form an unconventional triangle where the women compete for the role of Jung’s intellectual muse with more passion than they care about who shares his bed.  

Who were these women to each other? We know that both were intellectual, independent, self-educated, at a time when Swiss women did not attend university. They were arguably quite hungry for another woman to talk to about ideas.   

The play also explores the nature of Emma’s clandestine correspondence with Sigmund Freud, the separate relationship each woman had with C.G. Jung, and how this informed the women’s connection to each other. The themes of this story are endemic to our modern world: the nature of power, the complexity of relationships, oppression, betrayal, corruption, and redemption. The production features psychoanalyst/actor Rikki Ricard as Emma Jung, and Elizabeth Clark Stern, playwright/therapist/actor, as Toni Wolff. Directed by therapist/artist/director, Shierry Nicholsen.

Out of the Shadows premiered at the International Jungian Congress in Cape Town, South Africa in August, 2008. A staged reading of Nana Sophia's Oasis, Elizabeth Clark Stern's newest play, was done on Saturday, April 12, 2008, 8 p.m. at the COR Northwest Family Development Center 1711 12th Ave Seattle 98122.

Copyright © 2009 Elizabeth Clark Stern; Photo copyright © 2004 John Stern

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