Tuesday, November 01, 2011
I Interview Playwrights Part 399: David Anzuelo
Home town: El Paso, Texas
Current Town: NYC, NY
Q: What are you working on now
A: A new play called US/UK about a twink American hustler in London in 1989. I'm also working on re-writes for a workshop presentation of a personal-myth piece called Estrellita/Luminaria.
Q: Tell me, if you will, a story from your childhood that explains who you are as a writer or as a person.
A: As a kid, I was a huge comic book fanatic, horror movie buff and greek mythology geek. I'd spend hours pouring over back issues of silver age super-hero comic books; memorizing trivia. Every weekend I'd go to the movies w/ my Pop or watch cable monster movies and then re-inact the plots with my Star Wars and Micro-naut action figures. By the time I was 11, I'd read everything in the public library on Greek and Roman mythology and had a decent knowledge of Minoan and Spartan culture. All of this was fed and encouraged by my Parents who were ecstatic that they had a son who loved to read.
Q: If you could change one thing about theater, what would it be?
A: If I could, the one thing I'd change about theater over all, is the price of tickets. Broadway is ridiculously over-priced and even off-broadway is too much for many folks. I love the theater companies who have a "pay what you can" night.
Q: Who are or were your theatrical heroes?
A: My theater heroes are: Euripides; Aeschylus; Sophocles; Jean Genet; Joe Orton; Tennessee Williams; Tony Kushner; Luis Valdez and El Teatro Campesino; Peter Sellars; Grotowski; Ping Chong; Lee Nagrin; Stephen Adly Guirgus, Lucy Thurber; Kazuo Ohno; Min Tanaka and Pina Bausch. Although many will say the last three listed are choreographers more than theater artists. But I feel that they were really doing theater.
Q: What kind of theater excites you?
A: The kind of theater that excites me is one that is at once ancient and contemporary at the same time. I love theater that is visceral and physical and doesn't get too cerebral. I want theater that will provoke thought; enlighten people to new ideas and worlds and will leave an emotional imprint that lasts. I want sex and love and music and struggle. That's the kind of theater that excites me.
Q: What advice do you have for playwrights just starting out?
A: What advice do I have to fledgling playwrights? At the onset of a new piece write freely. Write what turns YOU on. Write it exactly as you see it in your mind. Don't worry about what people will think. It may be the only chance you have to see it live in any physical form.
And work with collaborators who have a rock&roll warrior philosophy. By that I mean, that they will work with you as a team; that they are disciplined athlete-artists and have intrepid spirits during the creation of the new work, but will be emotional dare-devils during performances and kick the work to a level even you didn't expect.
Q: Plugs, Please.
A: Right now Carlo Alban's INTRINGULIS is still running at Intar...I directed. And Thomas Bradshaw's BURNING is in pre-views at The New Group for which I'm the fight-director. Talk about intrepid artists! See these guy's work!