Wednesday, July 1, 2015
Spotlight On...Becky Goldberg
Hometown: Farmingville, NY
Education: I got my BA in English from SUNY New Paltz, and my MFA in Dramaturgy from Stony Brook University
Favorite Credits: Directing: Neighborhood 3: Requisition of Doom, Dramaturgy: Rabbit Hole, Pvt. Wars
Why theater?: Theatre practitioners are the best problem solvers. We're clever, resourceful, and innovative, and those are a qualities that I really admire in people. I also love that theatre asks us to look at and watch ourselves (represented by characters, of course!), as we are. There's no other media that requires you to watch a representation of real life that is quite as tangible as theatre, and I think it's really powerful because of that.
Tell us about 210 Amlent Avenue: It's the story of a woman trying to let go of the past and a young man trying to discover and embrace it. It explores family, love, lies, and the things that connect us to the other people around us.
What inspired you to write 210 Amlent Avenue?: Karl, the composer, asked me to come in and write the book for the show. I'm inspired by a lot of the classic story tellers in the theatre world: Ibsen, Chekov, etc, but am also greatly moved by the Americans that are becoming the "new" classics: Letts, Abaire, Albee, etc.
What kind of theater speaks to you? What or who inspires you as an artist?: I'm drawn to art, not just theatre, that makes me think about myself. I love finding things that pop the little bubble that I live in and make me think outside of the world that I live in. In a lot of what I write, I'm inspired by my own grief and trauma, and love using my characters as an outlet for my own demons.
If you could work with anyone you’ve yet to work with, who would it be?: I wake up every day disappointed that I haven't spontaneously morphed into Tina Fey, and I understand how unrealistic that is, so I would settle (ha!) for working with her. What a dream. She's made it okay to be an awkward, geeky, smart, creative chick, and I love her for that.
What show have you recommended to your friends?: August: Osage County, Spring Awakening, Next to Normal, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime, and Mabou Mines' production of Peter and Wendy (it was, I think, the most beautiful thing I've ever seen).
Who would play you in a movie about yourself and what would it be called?: Thora Birch (we look alike), and it would be called Cynically Optimistic (also the name of my hypothetical autobiography. Clearly, I've thought about this)
If you could go back in time and see any play or musical you missed, what would it be?: Ohh..... Gosh. Tyne Daly, Cynthia Nixon, and John Gallagher Jr. in Rabbit Hole. But also Michael C. Hall in Hedwig.
What’s your biggest guilty pleasure?: Sushi isn't really guilty, so that can't count. Noodles are guilty. I love noodles and ramen. And REALLY dirty gin martinis... Probably not at the same time.
If you weren’t working in theater, you would be _____?: Teaching (this is cheating because I already do). If I wasn't in theatre or theatre education, I'd probably be a Funeral Director (morbid, right?). I've always been interested in it as a career, for some of the same reasons I love theatre: you are the human connection for a person in a moment of redefinition and discovery, and something about that really speaks to me.
What’s up next?: I'm teaching a playwriting workshop and dramaturging a show in the fall, directing a play called She Kills Monsters in the spring, and will be working on my next play, a piece entitled Restless.
For more on 210 Amlent Avenue, visit 210amlentavenue.com or nymf.org