Featured Post

1100 Playwright Interviews

1100 Playwright Interviews A Sean Abley Rob Ackerman E.E. Adams Johnna Adams Liz Duffy Adams Tony Adams David Adjmi Keith Josef Adkins Nicc...

Jun 8, 2022

I Interview Playwrights Part 1112: Jake Brasch

Jake Brasch

Hometown: Denver, CO

Current Town: New York, New York

Q:  What are you working on now?

A:  This morning I cleaned the freezer. It was the most difficult project I’ve taken on in quite some time. A haunting expedition into the land of questionable past choices. Impossible to chart the dramaturgy of the thing. Harrowing.

Pre-freezer, I’ve been spending the bulk of the Spring hacking away at three pieces: I’ve been working on OUR TEMPEST with The Farm Theater’s College Collaboration Project. It’s a piece about Climate Change, queerness, and the perils of devised theatre. I’ve also been developing THE RESERVOIR with the EST/Sloan project, a super personal piece about Alzheimer’s disease, addiction, and what, if anything, we can do to prevent or recover memory loss. I just completed and shared the first draft of SPIN, a play I wrote with the Arthouse INKubator group. It’s a kaleidoscopic piece about reincarnated owls, birthday party clowns, the scarcity mentality, and Jewish mysticism.

I’m currently chewing on a nascent idea for a play that is about Bernie Sanders and apricot farming.

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

A:  At four years old, I staged a 90 minute “Oklahoma!” on my rocking horse. I wore a cowboy hat and Barney underwear, nothing else. My grandma played Aunt Eller, but I played the rest of the characters. You should have seen my one person dream ballet; I went so hard I broke a lamp. My parents filmed the whole thing and at several points you can hear them trying to rush me along, especially during a painfully under-tempo “Poor Jud is Dead.” I stubbornly persevered.

My auntie says I was born a 40-year-old gay man. My AOL Instant Messenger username was NathanLaneRules. Embarrassing beyond belief, but explains a lot.

Q:  What kind of theater excites you?

A:  I love theatre that scrambles you, that doesn’t allow itself to be classified, that has you laughing and crying and shaking your head in disbelief. I want to be surprised. I want real risk. I want plays to be journeys into the unknown rather than thesis statements. I want playwrights to build exquisitely weird structures that miraculously work. I want questions rather than answers. I want pain, humor, and heart all at once.

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

A:  Write. Don’t be precious. Write a bunch of bad plays. Write your way into your voice; don’t try to think your way into it– it won’t work. Focus on language, not ideas. Follow the flow. Surprise yourself. Make yourself laugh. Let the play sneak up on you.

Invite people to your apartment to hear a play you haven’t written yet. Lose your mind trying to write the play. Almost cancel the play reading several times. Miraculously finish a draft. Become painfully unsure of said draft. Share it anyway. Hear what you’ve written. Feel seen. Repeat.

Write write write stop reading this and write.

Q:  Plugs, please:

A:  Have you tried Angie’s Boom Chicka Pop Kettle Corn??? I am in no way affiliated, but it’s so unbelievably good so here’s a huge plug for the snack to rule all snacks. It’s in a purple bag and at most grocery stores. Best advice I can give.

I share work often in NYC, especially with Youngblood at the Ensemble Studio Theatre and The Farm Theater. For the next couple years, I’ll have a chance to share work at Juilliard as well!

For up to date plugs, you can visit jakebrasch.com. To read my plays (and then produce them!) you can visit https://newplayexchange.org/users/36675/jake-brasch

Enter Your Email To Have New Blog Posts Sent To You

Support The Blog
Mailing list to be invited to Adam's events
Adam's Patreon

Books by Adam (Amazon)

No comments: