EDINBURGH FRINGE 2023 / INTERVIEW
"Content in the show has shifted, we had a dance number for one version, now we have three musical numbers."
#MeToo, a one-woman show
cthearts.com/#METOO: A One-Woman Show
14 - 20 August 2023 - 15:55 (1hr00)
July 2, 2023
Sex cults with fake feminism, pretend shamans, Burning Man, Lower East Side “nightclub photographers” and Tinder f*ck boys all make an appearance in this educational and hilarious 20-plus-character one-woman show. Star takes us on a journey from childhood to adulthood cataloguing her sexual experiences and investigating them. Based on a true story, #MeToo is a wild ride, filled with a lot of laughs and heart.
Hi Star, thank you for talking to The New Current, how does it feel to be bringing #MeToo, a one-woman show to Edinburgh Fringe and C Venues this August?
I am excited and grateful for the opportunity.
Will this be the first time you’ve brought a show to the Fringe?
Yes, it will be my very first time performing at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and my first time visiting Scotland.
You have had a tremendous run with #MeToo, a one-woman show during the Hollywood Fringe Festival, and the response has been amazing, did you imagine you would get the type of reaction you got?
At the premiere, I had no expectations yet, I knew how important it was for me as an artist to share this work, and I was grateful that audience members resonated and enjoyed it.
Can you tell me a little bit about how #MeToo, a one-woman show came about, did you have any apprehensions about creating a show that deals with such an important subject?
#MeToo is based on a true story and the writing is inspired by real life experiences.
How essential is the creative collaboration between you and your director Jessica Lynn Johnson, who also helped develop this show?
When I met Jessica, I took her class and learned techniques used in solo theatre. This laid the foundation for the show so that by the next few months, I had a script ready and worked in tandem with Jessica as a director and dramaturg until we premiered the show at SOLOFEST.
If you could describe #MeToo, a one-woman show in THREE words what would they be?
Educational, Wild, Witty.
Since premiering #MeToo, a one-woman show have there been any major changes to your text or to the way you perform the show?
Absolutely, the way I have approached the show over the years, is that every performance is feedback. In the beginning, the show ran 75 or 90 minutes, but we are now down to 60 minutes. Content in the show has shifted, we had a dance number for one version, now we have three musical numbers. Each run has given me new information and I am thrilled to bring this new version to Edinburgh.
"I wrote my first poem at age 13, and a novel and screenplay at age 16 and 18. So, I knew writing was something I wanted to pursue professionally, but I didn’t exactly know how I wanted it to look, as I did not want to give up performing."
Have you always had a passion for theatre, writing and performing?
100 percent. I began performing at around age 3. It was my dream at that time to be an actress, perform on Broadway, and go to NYU. Growing up, I modelled professionally, danced, took musical theatre classes, and performed at a local community theatre. I performed in plays as a teenager and was involved in my high school’s drama department. I then majored in Theatre in College. After college, I discovered I had less of a motivation to pursue acting roles written by other people and more of a motivation to create my own work, so I focused on writing. I wrote my first poem at age 13, and a novel and screenplay at age 16 and 18. So, I knew writing was something I wanted to pursue professionally, but I didn’t exactly know how I wanted it to look, as I did not want to give up performing. It took me almost 8 years to discover slam poetry and that community. Performing spoken word laid the groundwork for me to later write and perform solo theatre. Once I discovered solo theatre, I knew instantly that it was the perfect vehicle for my skills and passions.
What does your work say about you as an artist?
As an artist, I aim to discuss social issues using the art of storytelling. I think comedy is an incredible vehicle in which to tackle challenging subjects. This show is playful, and I use personification for certain characters to define terms like codependency. I love being able to portray the fantastical and the absurd.
Do you have any advice, tips or suggestions you would offer anyone thinking about getting into theatre?
Make your own work. Produce your own work. Take risks and do not create work for critics. And, if someone tells you “no”, go somewhere else!
And finally, what do you want your fringe audiences to take away from #MeToo, a one-woman show?
I hope everyone laughs! Daily life can be exhausting, intense or challenging. And, so we turn to artists and the theatre to entertain us and take a break for a while from our everyday problems. So, that is my hope - that the audience gets a break for an hour. But, to that extent, this show is certainly not shying away from challenging moments, it approaches it with humor and wit, and I hope that audiences in return can look at similar situations in their life and turn that situation on its head. Perhaps they too can approach it with a bit of levity and see how sometimes things are actually so wild that they’re in a realm of farce and ridiculousness. I also hope that survivors in the audience feel seen and affirmed, knowing they are not alone.