Can experiencing what the 2016 U.S. presidential candidates said and how they said it through gender-reversed characters, cause us to revisit our own biases and develop insights from different perspectives?

Her Opponent used verbatim documentary theatre techniques to re-create excerpts of the three 2016 presidential debates. An actor performed the text, gestures, and movements of Hillary Clinton, but as a male Democratic candidate named Jonathan Gordon and an actress performed the text, gestures, and movements of Donald Trump, but as a female Republican candidate named Brenda King. A third actor played the role of The Moderator from each of the three debates.

The project's 2017 Off Broadway run at the Jerry Orbach Theater in Times Square  garnered a nomination for Best Unique Theatre Experience from New York City's Off Broadway Alliance. The experience included an opportunity for audiences to share their thoughts and impressions in a facilitated discussion that immediately followed each performance.

A full archival performance video is available by clicking here.


The cross-gender casting offered just enough remove to help audiences think through how they might have understood the debates had they not strongly preferred one candidate.
— Alexis Soloski, The New York Times
Not to oversell this, but watching this re-enactment was riveting - made me re-think how both candidates came across during the real debates.
— Steve Kornacki, MSNBC

C R E D I T S:

Maria Guadalupe & Joe Salvatore (co-creators), Márion Talán (costumes), Troy Beard (hair). Performers: Daryl Embry, Rachel Tuggle Whorton, and Andy Wagner. Photography by Richard Termine