Monday, October 8, 2018

Spotlight On...Jennifer Piech

Name: Jennifer Piech

Hometown: Cinnaminson, New Jersey

Education: BA in Theatre from the College of William and Mary

Select Credits: originated the role of Kate McGowan, Titanic, Broadway (Friends of NY Theatre Award for Outstanding Broadway debut), The Ride Down Mount Morgan, Broadway (by Arthur Miller and starring Patrick Stewart)

Why theater?:  I have come back to the biz after a motherhood hiatus.  It’s been such a process figuring out what the biz is now and my new place in it in this stage of my life.  Fascinating.  I find I am drawn to plays/stories that tackle some kind of social issue with complex and interesting relationships.  I have always felt that good theatre can shed light on anything about the human condition, really.  I’m drawn to good writing and compelling stories.

Who do you play in The War Party?:  I play Laura Smith, the incumbent Senatorial Republican candidate who just lost the election in a landslide.  And I curse like a sailor – I am loving it.

Tell us about The War Party The short answer is it’s basically a parable for our broken two-party system.  It is also about these two broken, smart, fierce women and how they connect and how they give each other something the other needs.  They are better and stronger for being together.  Not to be Pollyanna, but it also, I think, makes us laugh at ourselves and both parties and asks us to look beyond partisan thinking for the sake of our country. 

What is it like being a part of The War Party?:  I love this play, the players, the creatives.  Odelia Avadi (who plays the young woman) and I started working on this play in scene study class and were encouraged to do something with it.  It is empowering to take an idea and put a team together and make it happen.  I am honored that the playwright entrusted it to us and am honored that these creatives – director, designers, etc., all loved it enough to throw their creative juices into it too.

What kind of theater speaks to you? What or who inspires you as an artist?:  Right now I want to be a part of plays that resonate socially – even if they are from another time period – that they speak to what is happening today.  Great writing, complex relationships, interesting ideas.  And I am completely inspired especially by women who are creative producers – who find the stories that are meaningful to them and figure out a way to tell them, in whatever medium. 

Any roles you’re dying to play?:  Right now:  Nora in Doll’s House Part 2, Tracey in SWEAT, Margaret in Good People (this one was produced when I was not back in the biz but now I’m the right age to play it!), anything by Shaw, Rosemary in Outside Mullingar (not really social issues but a beautiful love story, fun part), The Other Place by Sharr White, another play by Vincent Delaney that deals with gun violence, I’m shopping it around for a production now, etc. 

What’s your favorite showtune?:  Oh gosh, not sure I have a favorite…

If you could work with anyone you’ve yet to work with, who would it be?:  Joe Mantello as a Director, Tommy Kail, Director, Ken Lonnergan, Director,  Sam Mendes, Director, I could go on.  I want to work with the companies who are developing new plays, new voices, new playwrights. 

Who would play you in a movie about yourself and what would it be called?:  Oh goodness.  Well if a girl can dream – Sandra Bullock – and it would be called “A Balancing Act:  Act Two” as a woman tries to balance motherhood, being a real estate broker, and coming back to the entertainment biz after many of the folks she knew died – literally.  It’s starting over but not starting over in a weird way.  It would be about discovering what she was meant to be now at this stage, finding her voice, while still making dinner and doing everyone’s laundry, of course.  Bullock would have the sense of humor needed:).  And dang, she’s cute.

What show have you recommended to your friends?:  A show that is playing now?  I really liked “The True.”  Beautiful performances, New Group producing it.  Of course, Come From Away (I am a Co-Producer on it!), Harry Potter – loved!  The Ferryman – which I haven’t seen yet, but it’s a great read and I can’t wait.

What’s the most played song on your iTunes?:  anything from Hamilton.

What’s your biggest guilty pleasure?:  Chocolate turtles.  I ALWAYS have emergency chocolate in my freezer at all times because you just never know.

What’s up next?:  I’m working with an independent Producer, Stephen Blanch, on his full length feature film called "Discovering Savannah" (I’m cast as Savannah – my first lead in a feature!) which is set to shoot spring of 2019. 

For more on The War Party, visit