Saturday, May 30, 2015

I Interview Playwrights Part 745: Emma Goidel


Emma Goidel

Hometown: Atlanta

Current Town: Philly and New York. I commute. By bus. It's fine.

Q:  What are you working on now?

A:  For a June reading at InterAct, THE GAP, which is a new play about siblings: one who believes she was abducted by aliens, and the other who is making a solo performance piece about her sister who believes she was abducted by aliens. It's a funny play about dark things: family secrets, repressed memories, abduction, bla bla bla.

Q:  Tell me about The Foundry.

A:  The Foundry is Philly's first playwright-run lab for early-career playwrights. It's helmed by Jacqueline Goldfinger, Quinn Eli, and Michael Hollinger, and is home to 15 local writers cutting their teeth professionally and working out their newest material in community. We drink a lot of beer after every meeting. It's a great thing.

Q:  Tell me, if you will, a story from your childhood that explains who you are as a writer or as a person.

A:  When I was three I put on a kick line with my sister for our parents' dinner guests wearing my mom's cowboy boots. When I kicked one into the audience, everyone laughed, and I remember feeling utter glee because I had masterminded this BRILLIANT joke that nobody realized had been orchestrated for their pleasure.

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

A:  The pay. Everybody would have more money to pay everybody more, and then everybody could afford to focus on one project at a time, and we'd all make better art and live longer lives with less anxiety and more good food.

Q:  Who are or were your theatrical heroes?

A:  Lorraine Hansberry, Martin McDonagh, Sheila Callaghan, Mel Brooks, Paula Vogel

Q:  What kind of theater excites you?

A:  Strange, dangerous theater that is very funny and very dark. Well-plotted plays with atypical structures.

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

A:  Find your tribe. Writing doesn't have to be lonely all the time. It's fun to make things in community, with people you love an admire and who bother you, people who can be witness to your failures and successes and drinking, and with whom you can share all that and celebrate them too. Cultivate generosity for your peers and forgiveness for yourself.

Q:  Plugs, please:

A:  WE CAN ALL AGREE TO PRETEND THIS NEVER HAPPENED opens at Ensemble Studio Theatre on June 3rd in Series B of the 35th Marathon of One-Act Plays.

THE GAP will have a staged reading at InterAct Theatre Company on June 28th, directed by Maura Krause

My playwrights producing collective, Orbiter 3, will open our first show on July 1 -- MOON MAN WALK by James Ijames -- and our second show in December -- A KNEE THAT CAN BEND, by me!


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