ROUNDABOUT BLOG

Marvin’s Room

 

Anne Kauffman in rehearsal for Marvin's Room. Photo by Jenny Anderson.

On June 24, 2017, Anne Kauffman spoke about Marvins Room with education dramaturg Ted Sod as part of Roundabout Theatre Company’s lecture series. An edited transcript follows (There are spoilers below).

Ted Sod: Anne was born and reared in Phoenix, Arizona, and she is one of six children. She was educated on the West Coast in California for both undergraduate and graduate school. Anne, while you were at undergrad school, a teacher said to you, Youre a director; how does it feel to be a director? Will you talk about how it felt to be validated by him?

Anne Kauffman: That happened during my first couple of years in college. As Ted said, I grew up in Phoenix, Arizona, in a very protective family. Going to college away from home, many of us experience that confusion where you don’t know who the hell you are. I had such a strong upbringing and I learned so much in college by being exposed to many different people, I was actually very destabilized. It truly has taken me until now to get myself together. So, at that particular point in my life, when someone from outside my family saw me objectively and suggested I was good at something – something that I actually wanted to do -- it was really empowering. I think if he didn’t say that to me, I may not have continued on this path. I think we’re so fragile at that time in our lives, throwing things against the wall and seeing if they’ll stick.

TS: In graduate school, Les Waters, the director, had an influence on you. Will you tell us how that manifested?

AK: I don’t know if everyone knows who Les Waters is; he is a British director. He is fantastic. He’s done a bunch of things in New York City. He directed Sarah Ruhl’s Eurydice at Second Stage -- The Christians at Playwrights Horizons -- and he’s worked a lot with Caryl Churchill. I took a lot of time off before I went to graduate school because I decided I needed to have more life experience. I had been in school forever. Les was very specific about wanting students who had lived a bit. He was actually a new teacher and he treated me like a colleague -- which was a new experience for me.  I learned a lot about collaboration working with him. He put himself on my level; we looked at a problem side by side rather than as mentor and mentee. It was unnerving at first, but I was able to realize that there is no right or wrong when it comes to being an artist – a director is collaboratively trying to figure something out. You fumble around in the dark for a while. You can have a lot of experience in the field, but some of the problems you encounter are always going to be the same.

TS: Wasnt it through him that you became familiar with the type of work you ultimately brought here and did with The Civilians?

AK: Les Waters worked with the Royal Court Theatre in London, and there was a company called Joint Stock which they formed with Max Stafford-Clark, Caryl Churchill, Timberlake Wertenbaker, and a lot of artists that many of you would recognize. They created work through an interview process. There are a number of Caryl Churchill plays that were actually created through this Joint Stock process. My colleague Steve Cosson and I were schooled in this process in graduate school. Les taught a class on Joint Stock and we were very taken with the method. Steve decided he wanted to start a company here in New York City, so we could make work using that same process. We picked a topic; we interviewed a number of people about it; and then we developed a show.

TS: When I interviewed you for the Marvins Room playgoers guide, you said its ironic that you were making your debut on Broadway with a revival, because youve directed so many new plays. You said one of the things that you miss about not working on a new play is having the playwright in the room with you.

AK: I feel like I really know Scott McPherson. I didn’t know him when he was alive -- he passed away in 1993 -- but I feel like I know him because his sensibility reminds me of the circle of friends I had when I first moved to New York. Marvins Room was originally produced in Chicago. Scott and his partner, Danny Sotomayor, lived in Chicago. After the show opened at the Goodman Theatre there, it was brought to Hartford Stage in Connecticut, and then to Playwrights Horizons in New York City in 1991, which is when I moved to New York. I didn’t see the play at that time, thank God, because I’m very impressionable. But I like to say that Scott and I both came to New York in 1991 and we’re making our Broadway debut together these many years later. I feel like I grew up on his particular brand of absurdism and realism and how elegant he is at interweaving comedy and tragedy.  What I love about his language is that it is very funny, and it feels somewhat absurd, but how far from reality is it really? You get such a strong sense of Scott’s perspective on the world. I think a lot of people see this play through the lens of AIDS. The play’s themes of mortality happened to coincide with a very particular moment in history in our country. His perspective on the spectrum of life and death never seemed so far away from each other. The play is a celebration of the interweaving of both. I do think that in this country we are very afraid of illness, becoming older, dying, and the prospect of what is going to happen to us. Caregiving is a very tricky concept in this country. I think it’s not something that is celebrated in the way that it should be, and I think Scott celebrates it in this play.

Lili Taylor in rehearsal for Marvin's Room. Photo by Jenny Anderson.

TS: Was there a time when you thought, I really want to ask Scott this particular question? Was there a moment when you needed to commune with him if he were still alive?

AK: What is great about a good playwright is that they put a map on the page. Whenever I got lost, I’d go back inside the script and ask, “Why did he choose this word rather than that word? Why is the period here rather than there?” It’s illuminating, and it helped me feel like he was there with me. I feel like I have his sensibility; I feel very close to him. But, having said that, it is always really nice to have a living playwright in the room to add another dimension to the discovery process.

TS: So many directors tell me that their process with the playwright is to ask a million questions to get inside the play, so that they can understand it as fully as possible. Sometimes I dont even know if the playwright knows what theyve created.

AK: Well, if they’re good they don’t. They’re writing unconsciously, and they’re writing from a part of themselves that doesn’t completely understand what they’re writing. I completely agree.

TS: You have a remarkable cast and I would like you to talk about what you were looking for in the audition process. Scott Ellis, who is Associate Artistic Director here, always says, I wanted to find people I wanted to spend eight weeks with. Its really very intense working on a play together. It seems to me that you needed very specific skills from the actors you cast. Is that true?

AK: First of all, I think Scott Ellis is absolutely right. I need to know if the actors are willing to collaborate and to listen and to push forward. If there are blocks in the rehearsal room -- meaning if there’s a lot of resistance -- we don’t get very far. I knew with this company of actors that they were going to dive in head first and be very open and engaged in experimenting with everything. I think that the particular kind of actor needed for the tone of this play is very specific; they have to be comedians with huge hearts and their understanding of the humanity in the play is very important. Both qualities are necessary, so you can have those moments of laughter and then deeply felt pain. We all know that comedy is the flip side of tragedy, etc. For example, Celia Weston playing Aunt Ruth in the scene where she’s talking about not telling Marvin that Bessie is gone and how she ignores the nurse – what is so extraordinary about that is that it’s funny, but we also feel Ruth’s inability to confront Marvin and tell him something that would absolutely crush him. That sort of comedy and tragedy juxtaposed is what is required of the actors in this play.

TS: There is something quite profound in this play when Lili Taylors character Bessie says Ive been so lucky to have loved so much. That is a moment that just lands in such a marvelous way because it is filled with wisdom.

AK: For us, it was a real discovery for Bessie. It’s something that she is puzzling out as she has this moment of real weakness. She sees the end may be near and the arc of her life flashes back to her. In rehearsal, it felt like that moment was an enriching discovery for the character.

TS: Especially in a culture that emphasizes being first, all about yourself, making the most of every opportunity and taking as opposed to giving. This play also says a lot about our responsibility to our families.

AK: I have four sisters and a brother. The idea of family in this play is very important to me.  In many of our families, the way our parents and siblings regard us helps to define the role we play in that family. You sometimes get stuck in your role. When you come home, you are almost calcified in that role. What is so extraordinary about Scott’s play is how he dramatizes our ability to break out of these roles. We see Lee slowly become the comfort-giver rather than the comfort-receiver. Lee really steps up and Bessie allows Lee to take care of her. Families are where so many of our behavioral patterns begin and I really love this idea of family being a mutable, living, generous thing that can shift.

TS: One of the wonderful things in this play is the budding relationship between Bessie and her nephew Hank. You can see that they both need each other: she not only wants him to take the bone marrow test, she sincerely wants to know more about him and he craves the attention. I have a niece and nephew and I find that sometimes that dynamic is so different from the dynamic between parents and their children.

AK: Absolutely. Out of six children, I’m the only one who doesn’t have children. I am very close with my nieces and nephews and it’s just a different relationship. My curiosity with my nieces and nephews is very pure -- I have no agenda with them; it’s pure love and curiosity. I feel my nieces and nephews actually gravitating toward me because I am pressure-free, and they can tell me things they can’t tell their parents. I love this relationship of blood that has no real pressure or responsibility.

TS: I read a New York Times interview with you, Lili, Janeane and Celia, and you said something to the effect of, I dont walk into the rehearsal room saying this is what its going to be. I want to make discoveries about the play together. Can you talk a bit about those discoveries and that process?

AK: When I was a younger director, I felt like I had to plan everything out, and that I had to know everything to the nth degree. Theatre is a very collaborative, live art form, and what I realized was that when I would come into a rehearsal room and just sort of dictate, I wasn’t really paying attention to who I cast, the chemistry, the group of personalities, the contributions that the actors themselves could make. When I discovered that something that I had pre-planned so diligently wasn’t working, it was very destabilizing for me. It took me a long time to come back around to fix a moment, because it was so hard to unclench my fists from it. As I get older and busier, I tend to leave myself big gaps. I’ll know what the play means to me and then we all make discoveries in rehearsal. I think that one of the biggest preproduction processes that I engage with is the set design; when I’m working on the set design, that’s when I really dig into the play. It’s enormously helpful. I have incredible design collaborators. I learn more about the play through its physical manifestation and what the space means metaphorically. I always have to start from a place of metaphor with a space. Laura Jellinek, the set designer, and I wanted to see the play through Bessie’s eyes and the ridiculous journey through her medical experience. The turntable, which is kind of a carnivalesque carousel, becomes concrete in Disney World; it reflects her crazy ride from the time that she’s diagnosed with leukemia till the end of the play. Again, the turntable is practical in terms of getting from space to space, but then it also became deeply metaphorical for the absurd journey that she takes.

Celia Weston in rehearsal for Marvin's Room. Photo by Jenny Anderson.

TS: Ive heard directors say time and time again, that the stage in this theatre has its own challenges, because it is so wide.

AK: It’s really wide, yes.

TS: Especially for something that wants intimacy. Thats another thing I loved about your production, how naturally the actors are projecting. It never feels like theyre pushing. You really do feel like youre eavesdropping. Was that difficult to accomplish?

AK: Yes, sound in here is very tricky.

Audience Member #1: I absolutely loved Marvins Room. My question is about Hank. To me, he is coming back for a sacrifice. Im wondering what you think the motivation for him coming back is?

AK: Oh, that’s interesting. You think he is coming back to sacrifice himself for Lee?

Audience Member #1: Right, because I think he would be better off by himself.

AK: I think that something happens at Disney World for everyone. Not just because Bessie faints and everyone has to come to her aid. Because Hank and Bessie start to form a relationship, I think Hank is ready to reach out to his mother…and Lee, having witnessed the relationship, wants to start over with Hank as well. So, at the top of the scene, when Lee and Hank are sitting on the bench together I think there is a real effort on both their parts to reach one another. I think their chemistry is volatile, we watch them try to control their regular impulses with each other.  When Hank carries Bessie in the following scene, I think that action -- from my point of view -- solidifies the change in his behavior. Hank says in an earlier scene, “I wish I were someplace else” and Bessie says, “Well, why aren’t you then?” What I think happens is that Hank’s idea of what that someplace else is morphs; he gets there physically and then he realizes that someplace else is actually back with his family starting a new chapter. Hank and Lee have a long way to go, but I think Hank really just doesn’t want to leave Bessie or Marvin, and really wants to make a connection with Lee.

TS: While watching today, I got the feeling that he was stepping up in a paternal way when he tells Charlie, You have to study, why are you doing badly in school? Obviously, Charlie is smart. I sensed that Hank is ready to take on some kind of responsibility.

Audience Member #2: My question is about the father, Marvin, and what kind of work you did when talking about who he is.  Also, who plays Marvin so beautifully, and are those sounds he makes recorded or are they improvised?

TS: Carman Lacivita plays him, right?

AK: Carman, yes, and he plays Bob and he plays the guy in the gopher or dog suit at Disney World. We spent a lot of time talking about who Marvin was to these two sisters. It is so easy to project onto Marvin the idea that he was the perfect father. We were very interested in the relationship that each of the sisters had with him before he fell ill, so we explored that history with the them and with Ruth. It is a very detailed back story that we have. And how his relationship with each daughter differs. In his compromised state, the state we now see him in, we came up with this idea of a man who has his wits about him, but he just doesn’t have the ability to communicate. We think that Ruth and Bessie know exactly what he is saying. And they are right. I think the distance between who Marvin was to each sister and his current state is a point of real interest for each of them. I think their musing about his younger virile days speaks to their desire to be taken care of again.

TS: You get a little glimpse of how he might have treated his daughters when the two sisters are talking about the carny worker Bessie was involved with. They talk about how their Dad wouldve hated that.

AK: Yes, we think he was strict and a military man.

TS: Is Ruth related on his side? Or the mothers side? Do we know that?

AK: It’s not in the script, but I always thought Ruth and Marvin are blood related.

Janeane Garofalo and Lili Taylor onstage in Marvin's Room. Photo by Joan Marcus.

Audience Member #3: There is a scene where Lee talks to Hank about how Hank was being hurt by his father. It happened very quickly, but maybe that explains why Hank is the way he is. Was I imagining it?

AK: You were not imagining it at all. That’s exactly right. What is so beautiful, again, about what Scott has written, as far as I’m concerned, is that you understand that Lee’s guilt is contributing to the combative relationship between her and Hank. Information about the abuse that seems to have happened comes out very quickly and then Ruth and Charlie enter and Hank is left with this piece of information to sort out on his own.

Audience Member #3:  So when Charlie came along, Lees husband was still there?

AK: When Charlie came along, Lee says, “I wanted to stop this and I threw him out.” Which is an intense admission to make to your other son – she basically says, “I wanted to save Charlie, but I ignored what was happening to you.”

Audience Member #4: As a director, do you move on to a new project when this opens, or are you still very much involved with the entire run of the play?

AK: There’s a certain point in the rehearsal process right before we open that we call “freezing the show,” and we’re headed toward that moment. Once opening happens, I disappear. I don’t disappear fully; I’ll come and watch and give notes, but technically, I’m onto the next project and the cast and crew take it and run with it.

TS: The stage manager pretty much takes over, correct?

AK: Yes, our stage manager Barclay Stiff will keep watch over the production. Barclay is one of my favorite kinds of stage managers because he’s got a director’s eye -- so when I give a note, he understands where it is coming from and how it is supposed to manifest. With someone like him, I have a real partner in the maintenance of the process.

TS: Anne, do you want to tell the audience what youre in rehearsal for now and whats happening at New York Theatre Workshop next season?

AK: Sure, at Encores!, I’m directing Assassins next.

TS: And then you are directing a play that you did at Yale recently that is coming to town correct?

AK: Yes, I’m directing a play by Amy Herzog. She wrote 4000 Miles and Belleville. We’re working on her new play called Mary Jane and we’re going to be at New York Theatre Workshop this fall.

Audience Member #5: Did you have any problems finding the comedy from the dialogue?

TS: So, youre asking her how she went about doing that or if there was a challenge in doing that?

Audience Member #5: Was it a challenge to do that?

AK: Directors are completely reliant on the actors’ understanding of what is funny about a line, but also, at a certain point during the process, we take every line apart and it becomes deeply unfunny for a very long time. And then, there’s structure and rhythm that helps. A good playwright like Scott really understands rhythm. I think the challenge is finding and sticking to the playwright’s rhythms. A comedy is a machine of sorts that a good playwright builds and if you give into it, it is enormously helpful in guiding the comedy.


Marvin's Room is now in performance at the American Airlines Theatre. For tickets and information, please visit our website.


Related Categories:
2016-2017 Season, Education @ Roundabout, Marvin's Room


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Marvin’s Room: Read, Watch, Listen

Posted on: August 1st, 2017 by Morgan Grambo

 

TO READ

The Baltimore Waltz
By Paula Vogel

Paula Vogel’s The Baltimore Waltz premiered in 1992 and won the Obie Award for Best Play. As her first play to gain national attention, Vogel’s work became a founding member of the “second generation of AIDS plays” along with Scott McPherson’s Marvin’s Room. While McPherson’s inspiration for the play centered on his childhood experiences, he later acknowledged that the play was deeply influenced by his experience as a caretaker for his friends and loved ones during the AIDS epidemic. Vogel’s The Baltimore Waltz directly addressing the crisis (the main character suffers from “Acquired Toilet Disease”) and was dedicated to her brother who succumbed to the AIDS virus in 1988.

 

Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant?: A Memoir
By Roz Chast

Roz Chast’s memoir focuses on the last years of the lives of her aging parents and her role as their only child. Written as a graphic novel, Chast’s humor and talent as a cartoonist landed Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant? on The New York Times list of “10 Best Books” and a 2014 National Book Award Finalist distinction. Like McPherson’s Marvin’s Room, Chast’s prodigious use of comedic relief is a necessity, allowing readers a moment of comfort in an otherwise heart wrenching story. Read an excerpt here.

 

To Watch

Marvin’s Room
1997 Film
Screenplay by Scott McPherson & Directed by Jerry Zaks

Shortly after the play’s critical success in New York City, Scott McPherson began penning the screenplay for the film adaptation of Marvin’s Room. With a stellar cast, including Meryl Streep, Robert De Niro, and Leonardo DiCaprio, the film earned Diane Keaton an Academy Award nomination for her portrayal of Bessie. While the film does not stray far from the play, there are lovely and surprising moments to be found throughout the adaptation. If you enjoyed the play, watch the trailer for the 1996 film of Marvin’s Room here.

 

To Listen

Good Life Project
By Jonathan Fields

If Marvin’s Room is “a play about living and dying...but mostly living”, then the Good Life Project is the podcast that will help you navigate and live your life to the fullest. Founded by Jonathan Fields, GLP manifested from an idea to seek out meaning, joy, and connection in our lives. Scott McPherson’s play examines the moments that make us most human and shows compassion in our lowest points. Good Life Project embraces those moments and interviews the leading minds on topics such as love, religion, self-care, and creativity. Listen here.


Related Categories:
2016-2017 Season, Marvin's Room


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Ted Sod: Where were you born and educated? Why did you want to become a theatre director? Did you have any teachers who had a profound influence on you?

Anne Kauffman: I was born in Phoenix, Arizona. I was one of six children and I often say that my theatrical chops came from trying to get attention from my family. I went to school in California for both undergrad and graduate school; two different universities, but I was an actor in undergrad -- a bad actor as it turned out. I was cast a lot as guys and it became very clear to me that I wasn’t destined for the stage because of my acting talent. I took a class in directing and my teacher, Michael Hackett, said to me, “You’re a director.” I learned quite a bit from Michael and he sat me down one day and said, “What are you going to do now that you know you are a director?” It was really moving that he validated me in that way. Ultimately, I decided to move to New York in the early ‘90s when Marvin’s Room debuted off-Broadway. I did not see it, but I was very aware of it. I like to say that Marvin’s Room and I came to the city at the same time and we are now making our Broadway debut together. I was an intern at Circle Rep before it closed its doors. I interned in their literary office in 1988 and then I worked for David Esbjornson at Classic Stage Company, where I was his resident assistant director.

TS: How did you get involved with The Civilians?

AK: I went to graduate school at UCSD and our mentor there, Les Waters, was part of Joint Stock at the Royal Court in London and in that company were Max Stafford-Clark, Caryl Churchill and Timberlake Wertenbaker, among others. Joint Stock created interview-based work. Les taught a class in it and one of my classmates, Steve Cosson really took to the method as a way of creating work.  We started The Civilians upon coming back to New York in 1999/2000.

TS: Why did you choose to direct Scott McPherson’s play Marvins Room?  What do you think this play is about?

AK: It is interesting that I’m making my Broadway debut with a revival and not a new play.  I’m a new-play director who does weird new plays.  But, David Binder and Sharon Karmazin optioned the play and David brought it to me. And actually, it has the elements that I traffic in as a new-play director; it has the absurdity and the kind of humanity that is in my wheelhouse and it is a stranger play than people give it credit for. I think it’s quite revolutionary in its own way. It’s unfortunate that I never got to meet Scott McPherson, who died not long after the play debuted in New York. Not only do I miss having the playwright in the room, but by all accounts, he was a startling human. I’ve been speaking with Jim Bagley, who is the Literary Executor for the play, and I feel as though I’m beginning to know Scott through him and learning what he cared about and how his sense of humor, which is dark and very confrontational, functions. The play is about facing illness, caregiving, the labyrinthian medical establishment, and what it means to be in a family. What those relationships and responsibilities are. Scott’s not being coy about any of these things, he’s facing them head on and he does it with a great sense of humor. His humor is what complicates the world in a really beautiful way.

TS: Do you see the play as contemporary or a period piece or doesn’t it really matter?

AK: I think that what it’s grappling with is contemporary. It’s some of the details like what’s available medically and…well…smoking indoors (that I refused to part with!) that put the action in a particular decade. But what Scott was talking about will forever be contemporary because we live in a culture that does not value caregiving and does not pay attention to or want to confront illness, aging or death. In this country, those things are very neatly swept under the rug. This play exposes those issues and treats them with respect. The play values and celebrates the act of caregiving and celebrates our responsibility to one another -- rather than trying to shut it away in a dark room.

TS: Will you give us some insight into your process as a director? What kind of research did you have to do?

AK: My way into any play is through the design -- through the set design really – and, so, the set designer is my most important collaborator. I don’t understand the play until I understand what the space is and I don’t mean “is it a kitchen?” I mean, what is the psychic space? What is the metaphor that most accurately expresses or captures the engine of the play? We have to address not only what the play is about, but what the metaphor is that encapsulates it.  We examine who these characters are within the space, what are their comings and goings? I know that sounds pedestrian, but it is actually very illuminating when you’re trying to figure out where someone is physically coming from and where someone is physically going. For instance, in this play, there are a lot of locations. My collaborator on this set is Laura Jellinek and what was important to us was finding the envelope of the play. When the audience walks into the theater, what is the tone? What is the mood? What do we want to communicate? And then within that, if we do the envelope well, the interior machinations of going from space to space and how characters move from one location to another should follow with fluidity and ease. And the mechanism that we use to get from place to place has dramaturgical value. Laura and I approached this play as an absurdist journey through the medical establishment. For Bessie, it’s a journey from caregiving to being taken care of. I think that Scott wrote the very first scene as a vaudeville to illuminate the idea that the byzantine medical establishment is a confusing and ridiculous entity. We start the play as a vaudeville downstage in one and then the curtain lifts and we see Bessie’s home and on stage left there’s a turntable and with each revolve of that turntable, we switch locations. That turntable ends up being a carousel at Disney World. So what you realize is that Bessie’s life, within the span of the play, has been this circular and somewhat disorienting ride-like journey.

Janeane Garofalo and Lili Taylor (Photo by Joan Marcus)

TS: I’m curious how you understand the relationship between Bessie and her sister Lee?

AK: I have very deep relationships with my sisters. It is very difficult for me to understand how sisters could not be close because I’m so dependent on mine. I think that within families, children take on certain responsibilities and they are labeled from a very young age. What kind of person are we in our family’s dynamic? Are we the black sheep? Are we someone who’s a really good student? Someone who’s maternal or someone who is a rebel? I feel like I’m the rebel in my family. Although we aren’t fractious like the two sisters in Marvin’s Room, I understand that family is the most wonderful and the most heinous source of who we are as individuals. It gives us everything. It writes our history into the future. I think the thing that the sisters in Marvin’s Room are striving for is redefinition and a chance to reconfigure their relationship. One of the things that’s important about the play is that the audience not jump to the conclusion that Bessie has sacrificed herself, that she has taken herself out of the world to take care of her father, Marvin, and her aunt Ruth. It would be reductive to decide that Bessie’s reality was Plan Z and not Plan A. I certainly think Lee judges Bessie in that way. And I think Bessie sees Lee as a fuck up and someone who is shirking responsibility -- but Lee has her own family who she’s trying to be responsible for. I’m trying not to view Bessie as someone who is just taking care of her family or Lee as someone who has abandoned her family. I want to relook at their individual actions, not as negative choices, but as things that are fulfilling and right for who these women are.

TS: Let’s talk about casting. What traits did you need in the actors?

AK: I think that this play is trafficking in and articulates the need for generosity and that we all need to model that behavior. So, I was looking for actors who have reputations for being generous. There’s so much to explore in this play. We all need to give this play the kind of exploration it deserves and I often find if I’m getting resistance from an actor, it denies the company from going as deeply as it can.  And this is just too important of a play to settle for a surface reading.  What the play is saying about this culture and what we need from one another requires actors who are giving.

TS: Do you have any advice for young people who say they want to direct and how do you keep yourself inspired as an artist?

AK: I would say you’ve just got to do it. You have to do it whenever you can. Get your friends together and work on your craft. You have to put stuff up wherever and whenever. It can be just two chairs in your living room, but figure it out so that you start to understand what you’re interested in and what your voice is. Then you can worry about your career.

I feel very clear nowadays that when I’m attracted to a play, it’s because  it usually includes real questions I have about my life. What inspires me are the questions I have about how to move forward in this country right now. And I seek out work that is an exploration in answering those questions.


Marvin's Room is now in performance at the American Airlines Theatre. For tickets and information, please visit our website.


Related Categories:
2016-2017 Season, Marvin's Room, Upstage


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