01 June 2009

hella fresh questions + answers

my friend, john rosenberg, has a new play premiering this week. yee! jericho road improvement association opens this thursday [6/4] and runs every thursday thru saturday in june. as soon as you're done reading this get yourself and your loved ones a ticket already. for serious. be bout it bout it and support local theater!

when he should've been working he took time out to answer five questions from me.

[1] what was the inspiration for your new play?

i wanted to write a play about american men and violence. i also wanted to write something that took place in the bay area. i lived for years in the east bay and still consider myself an oakland boy. there is a rich history of american men and violence in oakland so i set it there.

[2] do plays come to you wholly and you spend time filling in the blanks (reverse engineering)? or piecemeal and you spend time linking things up?

i think the process for each one is very different. although this one is very personal, this one kinda kept its' distance. i kinda knew where i wanted to go with the play but just because i knew what happens doesn't mean i knew how it make it happen without sounding or looking tacky or janky.

[3] when you begin a piece, how present is the audience?

i think you write for yourself until it isn't yours anymore. whatever that means. i think the presence of the audience is a very tricky matter. we all know we are sitting in a fucking theater. the trick is to somehow let characters talk like they usually do and at the same time fill the audience in on what is going on. and that is a fun game you play, inform the audience without insulting them. you can start off a play and have a character like, 'damn, it is thursday and i used to be a cop and killed black people.' but that shit is bad. and no matter what you do, you will have some moments that will absolutely murder and some fall flat. i have some jokes in the show about aaliyah. some people don't know who she is, but you craft it so they can be in on the joke.

[4] are there any plans for a works featuring penguino?

i think we would have to get a huge refrigerator unit or perform it at the south pole.

[5] lakers v. magic - predicitons?

lakers in one. fuck all lakers haters.

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