This is your first Sheherezade. What went into your decision to work on the show?
Well, I’d been peripherally affiliated with Sheherezade in the past as Volunteer Coordinator for PCSF. Jennifer Roberts was my gateway drug into the San Francisco theater scene, so passion projects of hers have a certain appeal to me. She’s essentially introduced me to every person that led to me to other projects around town. If Jennifer’s involved, you can know that something magical is going to take place. That, and I was also drawn to the idea of working with Wily West in some capacity, so when Laylah and Quinn approached me in the middle of another stage managing gig, asking me if I’d be interested in working on Sheherezade this year, I was inclined to accept.
The stage manager is usually a pretty behind the scenes role, but so critical. You also get to see things from a unique perspective. What aspects of the plays has you excited that people might not realize at first glance?
The incredible ensemble that makes up this particular Sheherezade is what excites me the most, though I think that will actually be very apparent to all audiences. They just have such great heart and passion and talent; they’ve made every moment of this experience, from auditions to tech week, truly endearing.
One of the themes that we’ve seen emerge across the plays is reality and perception and how those things can shift. Have you had an experience like that? You thought one thing was happening and it turned out to be completely different?
I think that happens all the time in life. People so rarely realize the magnitude of a single moment, how that moment is going to impact their lives forever, until that moment has passed. You’re all up in it, with the moment in your face, it’s impossible to see beyond that. That blinding proximity coupled with how difficult it is to really understand what another person may be saying or doing, that disconnect between your mind and theirs that is pretty much inevitable, except in the very closest of relationships, always seems to make perception and reality diverge. But that’s okay, I think. We make our own realities, anyway. If you want to share your reality with another person, you just have to be über communicative, which can be easier for some than for others.
In addition to Stage Managing for Sheherezade, you will be directing for Superheroes. Tell us about your projects. What can Sheherezade audiences look for from you this spring/summer?
Hah, oh, well, communication is actually something I like to think I excel at, at least when I want to, so I guess they can look forward to a show that tells them something, hopefully via showing, which is the ultimate form of “telling” on stage. That doesn’t sound very profound – that sounds like what all theatre is… ButSuperheroes will be special because there will be spandex involved, so, I mean, what more could you need? Sorry, I tend to be pretty nonchalant about projects until I feel they are more tangible in reality. We haven’t started the rehearsal process for Superheroes just yet, so I’m still in the “Heheh, yeah, I’m working on another project, yep,” phase – check in with me later, I’ll be more eloquent then. Maybe.