Playwright Monica Bauer took the Wizard of Oz, the new tensions in America and the old tensions in the Middle East and put them all in the head of a school drama teacher. Then she added a whole bunch of international actors and voila!
We grabbed this former professor from the American University in Cairo on her way to a rehearsal one night …
“Anne Frank” performs June 24 @ 3:45 PM; June 25 @ 4:30 PM; July 2 @ 7:15 PM; July 6 @ 9:00 PM; July 8 @ 9:00 PM; and July 9 @ 1:00 PM. For tickets, visit PlanetConnections.org or https://web.ovationtix.com/trs/cal/27385
2017 PLANET CONNECTION THEATRE FESTIVITY started last night and runs thru JULY 9, 2017 AT THE CLEMENTE, 107 SUFFOLK STREET, NYC.
What inspires you as an artist?
I’ve written a number of plays with young women and girls as protagonists, such as “My Occasion of Sin” (Urban Stages, Emerging Playwright Award), and “The Maternal Instinct” (Third Place, New Works for Young Women). I’ve also written many plays with LGBT themes, such as “Made for Each Other,” and “The Higher Education of Khalid Amir” (MITF Best New Script 2007). I’m drawn to outsiders who find a place where they can, to paraphrase Shakespeare, “screw their courage to the sticking point.” And because of my weird perspective as a former Political Science professor, much of my work, especially these days, has a political urgency to it. All of these inspirations have come together in this new play, “Anne Frank in the Gaza Strip: a Political Comedy.” Also, because I taught for a year at the American University in Cairo, I have an understanding of Islam, and an urge to hit Islamophobes over the head with a blunt theatrical instrument, so I’ve been writing about the rise of Islamaphobia a great deal these days. And I am always inspired to ground the action in comedy whenever I can, because laughter is required for the survival of the human race!
Why independent theater?
I would hope that some smart commercial producer would see a title such as “Anne Frank in the Gaza Strip: a Political Comedy”, and decide it could run in a commercial house. But what I know is, independent theater is the place where a writer and actors can go to the most outrageous places, without fear. That’s why independent theater is necessary, always, and especially, these days!