Modern history's saddest stories of injustice and persecution were crafted by the evil-doers of World War II. How, then, an effeminate boy dressed in women's clothing was spared a bullet from a Nazi's gun is a wonder.

Modern history's saddest stories of injustice and persecution were crafted by the evil-doers of World War II. How, then, an effeminate boy dressed in women's clothing was spared a bullet from a Nazi's gun is a wonder.

The fact that Charlotte von Mahlsdorf (nee Lothar Berfelde) survived Nazi Germany and communist East Berlin is fascinating. Her story is told in CATCO's one-actor play "I Am My Own Wife."

Von Mahlsdorf was a transvestite who gained prominence after the Berlin Wall fell, heralded as a hero of resistance and gay pride. However, as her fame grew, so did doubts of her bravest recollections as well as accusations of her being a spy for the Stasi.

The moral of the story is that survival isn't simple, and neither is history. Identity is multifaceted, and our lies to ourselves can mean more than our truths.

CATCO's performance of the Pulitzer Prize-winning play is moving. These lessons are expertly delivered by Christopher Marlowe Roche, who plays von Mahlsdorf and more than 30 other characters.

The script is a bit self-indulgent in terms of playwright Doug Wright's involvement as a character, but it's more than forgivable as Roche moves through various accents and foreign languages, never confusing the audience.

Roche's movements while portraying von Mahlsdorf are breathtaking. Throughout the play, his use of the stage - which the audience surrounds on three sides - delivers maximum emotional impact.

Go see this play if you are interested in any of the following: theater, history, storytelling or human rights.