nytheatre.com q&a preview by Heather Ehlers
October 13, 2012
What is your job on this show?
Where were you born? Where were you raised? Where did you go to school?
I was born in Davenport, Iowa, and I was raised in Los Angeles, California. I got my Master’s degree from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts Graduate Acting Program.
Why is this piece a solo play (rather than a multi-actor play)?
This play is an autobiographical tale of my personal experiences. No one else could have this perspective but me. I believe the writing is good enough that the stories could be performed by other (really talented) actors, but since I’m a total control freak -I’m doing it alone!
In your own words, what do you think this show is about? What will audiences take away with them after seeing it?
This play is about one woman’s journey (that would be me) in search of acceptance, meaning and spiritual connection. It’s about sex, love, forgiveness, and faith. I visit three poignant moments that occur 15 years apart that examine what it means to be a woman. I struggle with issues of identity as a teenage foreign exchange student, experience transformation through natural childbirth as a mother in labor, and have a torrid affair as a middle-aged adulteress -which shatters my reality and connects me to a higher power. Memories from my past are woven through the piece using music, poems and film. The show is about 90 minutes long and audiences say that the time flies by quickly. There are lots of laughs and some deeply touching moments. I performed the piece last year in L.A. to full houses and extremely positive responses. I was the first show to be sold out last year at the United Solo Theatre Festival -which is probably why I’ve been asked back for two Encore performances. Audiences can expect to leave entertained, and many may be prompted to question their own lives and experiences -especially surrounding the issues of sex, love, addiction, forgiveness, and faith.
Which “S” word best describes your show: SMOOTH, SEXY, SMART, SURPRISING?
All of the above , plus SENSUAL, SILLY, STUPENDOUS, SUPERB, SURREAL, SERIOUS, SCARY, SARCASTIC, STORMY, SUMPTUOUS, SERPENTINE, SENSATIONAL, SUBTLE, SCINTILLATING, SELF-ACTUALIZED, SEISMIC, SEMINAL, SENSITIVE, SHARP, SHIMMERING, SHOCKING, SPORTY, STEAMY, STRANGE, SHAMELESS, SIGNIFICANT, SINCERE, STUNNING, STRONG, STRIKING, SKILLFUL, SPUNKY, SOLID, SUBLIME, SYNERGISTIC, SPONTANEOUS, SANGUINE, SINFUL, SCANDALOUS, SPICY, SLICK, SHATTERING, SUNNY, SPECIAL, SOULFUL, SOBER, SOARING, SEARCHING, SUFFRAGIST, SPINNING!!!
Can theater bring about societal change? Why or why not?
It already has, and hopefully it will always continue to. Theater holds a mirror up to society to reflect, educate and entertain. The simple act of storytelling in a public arena has the potential to shift one person’s perception or transform an entire community through catharsis. Although form and aesthetics in theater continue to change, the human element remains essential. It’s this human stuff that binds us, creates connection, community, our society. For me, the arts represent the heart and soul of a society. May our Theater be compelling, crucial, and compassionately considered so that the mirror held up will reflect a thriving society.