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Peggy Pregnant Skates

nytheatre.com q&a preview by Alex Kveton
August 17, 2013

What is your job on this show?
Playwright.

What is your show about?
A drama on roller skates about a pregnant girl that, in order to save her soul, chooses to decrease her baby's chances of living by drinking and smoking while on roller skates, until she has a vision her baby is the Second Coming of Christ.

What type of theater do you like most to work on?
I like theatre that's got a bit of Commedia dell'Arte in it - not slapstick per se, but spectacle, comedy, music, some poetics, and people generally making stupid decisions. I like plays that are hyper-real. I don't think theatre should be realistic. Film has got realism pretty well covered. I like going to the theatre to see something I haven't seen before.

Who is more important in the theater: the actor, the playwright, or the director?
I would be nothing without the actors and director. It's amazing what they all can teach you about your play. It's the best feeling to rewrite in the room and just make it work better for everyone. I don't think any of those roles are more important than the other. We all need each other. I know Edward Albee would probably say that actors and directors would be nothing without playwrights, but he can say that because he's Edward freaking Albee. Until I can write "Virginia Woolf," I'll take all the help I can get.

Why did you want to write/direct/produce/act in/work on this show?
I wrote this play at first as a challenge. A friend of mine said she wanted to play a character that was pregnant, smoking a cigarette, and on roller skates, and I thought, "Why the hell would anybody do that?" I wanted to figure out who that person was and why she was doing it. Then I figured that there had to be some complication in it, so the play developed something of a Christ complex.

Which cartoon character would you identify your show with: Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Mickey Mouse, Marge Simpson?
Daffy Duck, but only the times when he does something and ends up with no face or getting his beak blown off.

If you had ten million dollars that you had to spend on theatrical endeavors, how would you use the money?
I would buy people rehearsal space. I'd build a building, put a theater in it, and just make it free for anybody to use. If there's any money left, it would go towards promoting whatever the artists or companies have created. Young artists just need time to develop. Having pyrotechnics and people swinging from the ceiling would be sweet to have in a show, but people are doing much more challenging and interesting stuff without all that. The last thing they need to worry about is money.