Creator and Star of The Creeps
Talk about the creative process of this play. Where do you find your inspiration?
The Creeps is a discussion about humanity - maybe the darkest forms of our humanity. And at the same time, it shows the real likeness we have to one another, even those we think we don’t have a lot in common. The inspiration comes from a lot of my own musings about humans and their unique stories, even on those of the “fringes” of society. I think about what happens to some people - sometimes through no fault of their own - they meet the wrong person or take a wrong turn and their lives are drastically altered. I call it ‘the heartbreak of circumstance’, and it’s a lot of where the empathy comes from in the show.
Each character has drastically different traits, body language, and stories. What was the process of developing each of these characters? How have they evolved over time?
I am really inspired by the athleticism and caliber that I see in performers on Broadway. Similarly, to athletes at the top of their field, I wanted to engage with the question of what it took to be performing on that kind of physical and energetic level. So I would start to get myself into intense physical positions and allow my heart rate to go up, then my breath would change. I started improvising and talking in a stream of consciousness. It was kind of magical. They’ve developed over the years in response to the world at large and the political conversations that have occurred, as well as the way in which I’ve grown in my own personal life.
The audience plays a fundamental role in the play. How does this affect the performance night to night? What has been your favorite audience engagement in the past? How does the audience change over the course of the show?
This show works so well because the audience is so involved. It is a thrill to experience and makes the show even more alive and exciting. A favorite was one of the characters, Stumpy, who is a little girl, asked if someone wanted to tell a joke to the whole audience. They did, and Stumpy said, “Well, comedy isn't for everyone”. To which the whole audience erupted in laughter!! It was hilarious. The audience changes because they start to unravel all the things that aren’t so obvious about the show. They start to unlock what's underneath the surface with the characters and the world, and ultimately, are left with their mouths agape. I really enjoy it when they realize there is so much more going on than what meets the eye.
Who is the audience of the play? What do you want people to take away from the play?
Anyone who is up for a really great time at the theater. Anyone who wants a show that is totally different from what they usually see. Anyone who is interested in being a bit brave and daring! Come with a group of friends and get ready for a crazy and fun ride. Ultimately, it’s a great night at the theater. And I know I’ll be doing my job right if at the end of the show, their eyes are wide and their mouths are agape. I want people to take away both a full heart, thinking about humans around them, thinking about the likeness that we have to each other, and having had a blast.
What are you most proud of with this production?
I’m so proud that I created this unique show that has impacted so many people over the years that have seen it. I’m so proud that it has connected so deeply to so many different people. I’m so proud I get to bring this show to more people and we get to have a fantastic time together Off-Broadway! It is truly a dream come true! Let’s go to New York, I can’t wait to see you there!