STEVE KOPPMAN is a soon-to-be published playwright. You can see his work this year in Sheherezade 14!
Is this your first Sheherezade?
Which play did you write? What's it about?
"Almost Like Being Alive." I'd actually rather not say what it's "about." But it takes place at a Starbucks between a worker and a customer.
What was your inspiration for the play?
Workers greeting customers at my local Starbucks.
An emerging theme between these plays that has really jumped out at us is reality and perception. Tell us about an experience that you thought had been one thing only to discover it was completely different.
A: When I was a teenager, I was traveling in a place I took to be a potential combat zone, Eilat, the southernmost point in Israel, where the desert, as beach, reaches the sea, and Jordan - at that time a seemingly implacable enemy - was right across the water. It was summer. I'd arrived by bus in the evening; the youth hostel was full. I heard there were no cheap hotels at Eilat, a resort town, in July. I set up to sleep on the beach only because there seemed no alternative. Suddenly over the horizon there was an eerie light. Then something white, bright, glowing and seemingly enormous seemed rapidly to be almost exploding up from the horizon. Instinctively, I started running like a maniac. A guy stopped me and asked why I was running. Of course, it was the Moon. I grew up in New York City. I know this will sound dumb, but before that I had no real gut sense the Moon even came up out of the horizon.
What has participating in Sheherezade meant to you?
I feel very honored. It's good to see your work up on stage, the recognition is nice, working with this broad and very talented group of people on development, publicity, in rehearsal and more is very stimulating. I appreciate it.
What other projects are you working on? What can audiences of Sheherezade look forward to next?
I'm chronically working on short plays, though lately not nearly as much as I'd like. My first produced play (by Santa Cruz Actors Theatre), "Star-Spangled Wully Bully," is slated to be published later this year in 25 10-Minute Plays for Teens, an anthology from Applause Theatre & Cinema Books.