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Princes Don't Live in Cyberland

nytheatre.com q&a preview by Erika Jenko
February 14, 2013

What is your job on this show?
Writer/Director/Actor.

What is your show about?
In her quest to find her prince, Erika made every mistake in the book...but with a mom who has been married for 31 years and a grandmother who broke all the rules, Erika is about to learn that Happily Ever After still exists.

When did you know you wanted to work in the theater, and why?
I knew I wanted to work in theatre when I was a kid. I was sitting in the front row watching "Peter Pan" for the first time. The moment Peter flew over my head, I knew I had to be a part of this magic for the rest of my life. Every show I've worked on (whether it has been on-stage or behind-the-scenes) has brought a certain kind of magic into my life, and I hope to continue to work on projects that'll make people feel the same way.

What are some of your previous theater credits? (Be specific! Name shows, etc.)
My favorite role was (of course) playing Older Wendy/Indian Dancer in "Peter Pan." I'm a California native who is extremely new to New York. L.A. credits include: Mary Warren (The Crucible), Sunny (The Last Night of Ballyhoo), Alice (You Can't Take it With You), Miranda (The Tempest), Purity (Anything Goes) and Nurse Preen (The Man Who Came to Dinner).

Is there a particular moment in this show that you really love or look forward to? Without giving away surprises, what happens in that moment and why does it jazz you?
Throughout the show, my two cast-mates (Charlotte Munson & Paula Rivera) switch off between playing ensemble characters as well as portraying my mother and grandmother. In PRINCES DON'T LIVE IN CYBERLAND, I play myself throughout the show, but I always look forward to the moments where I'm doing a scene with the girls when they're Mom or Gramma. The family element of the show is something that I truly enjoy, and the girls do an absolutely fantastic job of portraying the women in my life who have always been so important to me.

Which cartoon character would you identify your show with: Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Mickey Mouse, Marge Simpson?
Mickey Mouse! The show analyzes the classic Disney fairy tales and relates them to trying to date in the modern world. Mickey is magic. Our show is out to prove that fairy tales are real as long as you see people for who they really are.

How important is diversity to you in the theater you see/make?
Diversity is so incredibly important, especially when you take into consideration the type of format that PRINCES follows. The show includes everything from dance and singing to breaking the 4th wall. Whether I'm seeing shows or creating shows, I always want something different. Certain themes will stand the test of time such as Love and Family. It's up to us to consistently find new ways to tell our stories and to challenge our audiences.