nytheatre.com q&a preview by Emma Berry
October 19, 2012
What is your job on this show?
What type of theater do you like most to work on?
Well, I actually gave up directing in the theater because I was getting bored. Once I read Peggy's script however, I knew I wanted to be a part of it. I had no idea I would end up with the unique opportunity to direct the premier. This play is what great theater is about - amazing writing, actors that are skilled and talented and an ensemble cast & crew that is dedicated to the promise of live performance.
Why do you do theater (as opposed to film, or TV, or something not in the entertainment field)?
I've worked in film and television and its like comparing apple to cats. The live event is more than just higher risk. It is a exploration of the human condition in action. When you get an ensemble like ours something really special happens. We meet the audience and offer them everything we have in service to the exchange: the gift.
Are there any cautions or warnings you’d like to make about the show (e.g., not appropriate for little kids)?
Although this play deals with the end of one life be prepared to laugh. Peggy write a play that is so finely crafted that is engages the audience on so many levels - through humour, sadness, grief, love, play, pain and most of all life. Doesn't hurt that we have a top notch group of actors working on this.
Which famous New Jerseyite would like your show the best: Snooki, Bruce Springsteen, Thomas Edison?
That's the amazing thing - they would all like respond to it. We have had teenagers and old age pensioners rave about the play but highlight different elements. The young folks enjoy the challenge and the thought provoking journey. The older folks brought up personal experiences of loss and grieving. If Bruce Springsteen or Snooki want a ticket I think we could arrange that!
Can theater bring about societal change? Why or why not?
This play brings about social change one person at a time. At some point we will be confronted by how to let someone die. If you have witnessed the transformation and heard the ideas in this play you will be armed with tools and emotional recognition to be more in control of that event. As a society, we are obsessed with young and new. We have rejected the whole process of death which means we are incapable of processing it. If we embrace it, we can lose our fear of it and it help us to 'live till we die'.