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Summer Shorts 2013

nytheatre.com q&a preview by Lucas Hnath
July 3, 2013

What is your job on this show?
Playwright, ABOUT A WOMAN NAMED SARAH.

What is your show about?
It is 2008, and Sarah is in Arizona interviewing for a job with a man named John and his wife Cindy, and Sarah really wants the job so much that she ends up doing something that hurts the feelings of her husband Todd—yes, this is a play about that Sarah.

What type of theater do you like most to work on?
Clean spare precise muscular little plays. With funny bits. And sometimes about famous people, but not always.

What are some of your previous theater credits? (Be specific! Name shows, etc.)
So far this year my play ISAAC'S EYE was produced at Ensemble Studio Theatre, NIGHTNIGHT at the 2013 Humana Festival of New Plays, A PUBLIC READING OF AN UNPRODUCED SCREENPLAY ABOUT THE DEATH OF WALT DISNEY at Soho Rep, and DEATH TAX at the Royal Court Theatre.

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?
The play is based on real people, famous people, people we've all heard of; but I don't particularly care about being factually accurate. The real stuff is only a springboard for the fake stuff. And so, I especially enjoy all of the moments in the play in which a character does something that directly contradicts what we know about their real counterpart. And yet, it still feels weirdly true.

Groucho, Chico, Harpo, or Zeppo?
Groucho.

Who are your heroes?
Churchill, Breuer, Ibsen, Fornes, Foreman, Stein, Albee. Groucho.