nytheatre.com q&a preview by John Feffer
July 23, 2012
What is your job on this show?
playwright and performer.
When did you know you wanted to work in the theater, and why?
I started working in theater at the relatively advanced age of 45. But ever since seeing my first Tom Stoppard play, I knew that I wanted to write for the stage. Then I saw Spalding Gray and I knew that I wanted to perform one-man shows. The Fringe provided me access to this magical world. After performing three one-man shows in Washington, DC, I'm now bringing my first ensemble play to New York.
Complete this sentence: My show is the only one in FringeNYC that...?
reveals what really goes on inside the Beltway in Washington, DC -- the hubris, the lies and deceptions, the media circus and the power games.
Do you think the audience will talk about your show for 5 minutes, an hour, or way into the wee hours of the night?
The audience will talk about the play after the performance and through dinner, into the wee hours of the night and over breakfast the next day, and every time they watch the television news. They will debate the moral challenges, the narrative twists, and the ultimate question: is that really how people in Washington look at the rest of the world?
Which “S” word best describes your show: SMOOTH, SEXY, SMART, SURPRISING?
Surprising: the play starts with a surprise and moves from surprise to surprise. But I can't tell you anything more without a spoiler alert.
Theatre is a necessary ingredient in democratic societies. Do you agree or disagree, and why?
A play sparked the Polish protests of 1968. Vaclav Havel's plays were central to the transformations in Czechoslovakia in 1989. The theater has been at the heart of creating a new democratic sensibility in Kosovo. Here in the United States, the theater hasn't had quite the same impact. But many of our plays have helped us understand and engage with major social developments -- Israel Zangwill's The Melting Pot, Arthur Miller's The Crucible, Lorraine Hansberry's Raisin in the Sun. Theater is the dream life of democracy.