Wednesday, March 20, 2013

I Interview Playwrights Part 560: Anna Greenfield

Anna Greenfield

Hometown: Carmel, California.

Home of Clint Eastwood, former mayor, home of my parents they moved there in the seventies and still rent their house, home of the ocean and a ridiculously beautiful beach. When I want people to think that I am like Steinbeck, I tell them I am from Salinas, California. When I want them to think that I am like Henry Miller, I tell them that I am from Big Sur, California. When I want them to think of me as a retired older gentlemen-and that identity is probably closest to my own in all honesty- I tell them where I am from which is Carmel.

Current Town:   Brooklyn, I like the word town it makes me feel like things are gonna be okay that home is wherever you are and of hearth fireplace conversations people might have during the holidays. But it also makes me feel like nothing ever will change which is a mind cage that I build for myself sometimes.

Q:  Tell me about All Girls.

A:  All Girls is a hyper real, sometimes surreal play about three teenage girls and one colossally scary mother. Trembling on the brink of womanhood, the girls act out with one another and their families in the most outrageous ways imaginable. It’s also funny.

Directed by Lee Sunday Evans. Performed by Zoe Costello, Anna Konkle, Judith Hawking, and me! Aaaaagh! These women who are making the show are incredible. We have an all women design team, production team and a female stage manager. It is All Girls working on this play All Girls and the energy of this piece is pretty amazing and scary and brave and real and raw and truthful and emotional and absurd and hilarious. I am exhilarated and exhausted by our rehearsals. We are doing some real digging deep work into this play and what we have to share is something that is very meaningful to all of us. I hope the connection with the audience works works works! I am working with a pretty big margin of fear with this play but also bravery. Mostly I am in awe and debt to the captain called Lee Sunday Evans, our director who is the most incisive, intelligent, brilliant director I have ever ever ever worked with.

Q:  What else are you working on?

A:  I am also part of the 2012-2013 writer director lab at Soho Rep headed by the insanely great Jenny Schwartz and Ken Russ Schmoll. Mary Birnbaum is directing a reading of my play This Is Gonna Be Great April 29th!! Another play that makes me scared. I freaking love that lab though god it makes me sad and happy at the same time.

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 used to write stories in this legal pad when I was a child. I wrote stories about magic candlesticks and slavery. I think I was eight when I wrote story about a girl who was a slave in the South and worked on a plantation. Later I realized I had just copied an American Girl Doll story I had read about Abby who was the Doll who endured slavery. And then I passed it off as my own. So, plagiary. My dad is a writer and my mom makes up stories in her head so I think I just grew up thinking that when we feel things we write them down or act them out alone in our rooms. Instead of, you know, talking about it.

Q: If you could change one thing about theater, what would it be?

A:  I feel unqualified to change things about theater. I want theater to change things about me.

Q: Who are or were your theatrical heroes?

A:  Lee Sunday Evans, Boo Killebrew, Jenny Schwartz, Heidi Schreck, and actually seriously anyone who gets a play up and running-it takes collaboration and love and I admire the instinct people have to dive into the unknown with a new play.

Q: What kind of theater excites you?

A:  anything goddamn moving. I freaking love to be moved. And entertained. But I want to feel like there is an emotional entertainment happening with a deep punch underneath.

Q: What advice do you have for playwrights just starting out?

A:  I am a playwright just starting out so my advice to myself is to just keep going.

Q:  Plugs, please:

A:  All Girls. March 28-April 13. Thurs, Fri, Sat at 8pm. The Kraine Theater, 85 East 4th street. to buy tickets!

Thursday nights are pay what you can! Tickets are cheap anyways!

This Is Gonna Be Great, as part of the Soho Rep writer director lab.
April 29th, Access Theater Space
Book Store
Books by Adam

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