Wednesday, April 20, 2011
I Interview Playwrights Part 340: Darcy Fowler
Hometown: Marblehead, Massachusetts.
Current Town: Brooklyn, NY
Q: What are you working on now?
A: I’m working on an as of yet untitled musical with the band The Spring Standards. www.springstandards.com. They’re such a wonderful and unique band and I’m excited about the direction we’re headed in…it’s definitely not your typical musical. We’re having our first reading June 29th at South Street Seaport as part of Youngblood’s Bloodworks.
I’m also in post production of the 5th episode of a webseries I created and co-write called “You Make My Dreams Come True,” about three girls with nothing but a dream and a Hall and Oates Band. Watch it! It’ll make you laugh. Will be out next week at: www.youmakemydreamscometrue.com.
Q: Tell me, if you will, a story from your childhood that explains who you are as a writer or as a person.
A: I watched a ton of classic movies, lots of comedies. I remember seeing Woody Allen’s “Sleeper” when I was 6 or 7, and my mind being blown. Watched tons of thrillers too, mostly Hithcock. They would scare the crap out of me and I would lay in bed at night for hours, wide awake. I loved it.
Also when I was 10 my mom pushed me to join something in my town called the Rebel Shakespeare Company, which was run by a woman named Keri Cahill, and was basically just a bunch of kids performing Shakespeare on this old fort by the ocean, during the summer. I didn’t fully realize it at the time, but it was an extraordinarily powerful program, and it changed my life. I remember playing the Nurse from Romeo and Juliet and running around hitting everyone with a fan. It was the best. Many of the kids from that program are still heavily involved in theatre or the arts in some way.
Q: If you could change one thing about theater, what would it be?
A: I love how London treats theatre. It’s so sacred. I wish it was more like that here. I wish more reverence was given to off-off Broadway. I’ve seen so many gems of plays that have been overlooked in one way or another.
Q: Who are or were your theatrical heroes?
A: Well my list contains more than theatrical ones, hope that’s ok. I’m a big Aaron Sorkin fan. His dialogue’s like an Olympic ping pong match. Stephen Adly Guirgis. His plays make me feel excited and alive. The Marx Brothers, Tina Fey, Steve Martin, Woody Allen, Mel Brooks. Love all their comedy. Alison Janney. She inspires me as both an actress and a writer. I’d love to write a play for her someday. Also, it's my first year in EST's Youngblood, and it's been really incredible to hear so much new work from so many young, talented and hard working writers. I'm huge fan of everyone there.
Q: What kind of theater excites you?
A: Stuff that makes me feel full and hopeful. Productions with no budget told with just a ton of love and ferocity and care. LAByrinth Theatre. I recently got involved in their Summer Intensive, and it was inspiring and exciting to see how that community worked.
Q: What advice do you have for playwrights just starting out?
A: Well, as a playwright that’s also just starting out, there’s the instinct to write and then not let your writing see the light of day. Knock on your roommate’s door, or call a friend and ask them to read what you’ve been working on. That’s been key for me. If your friends love you, they will help you. As long as you don’t ask them too much. Then they’ll tell you to simmer your shit.
Q: Plugs, please:
A: Come see the Untitled Spring Standards Project
As part of EST Youngblood’s Bloodworks.
Book by Darcy Fowler, Music and Lyrics by the Spring Standards
Algonquin Seaport Theater: http://www.algonquinseaporttheater.org/
South Street Sea Port
June 29th at 7pm
And watch for the 5th episode of my webseries You Make My Dreams Come True At: www.youmakemydreamscometrue.com.
For more info about me as a writer and an actress: