Even though From White Plains is still enjoying it’s critically acclaimed run at The Kitchen Theatre, there are still plenty of developments with our upcoming production of The Faire (coming in February of 2014). Feel free to check out our The Faire show page for updates on the production as they develop.
Additionally, I sat down with Crystal Finn, playwright of The Faire, to chat a little bit about her work, her life, and working with Fault Line Theatre:
Tell us a little about The Faire and the inspiration behind it.
I spent a large part of my childhood at a Renaissance Faire, working with my parents selling pottery. It was an early education in what theater is. Even as a very young kid you had a sense that this place was totally magical and totally absurd. I remember years later reading “Barthalomew Fayre”, the Ben Jonson play, and thinking: I know these people! I became very interested in the idea of a Fair as a kind of in-between place where normal social rules don’t matter. The setting in my play is not the literal Renaissance Faire I grew up in–it’s more of an imagined space.
Many people are familiar with your excellent work as an actor, but perhaps less so with your excellent work as a writer. Was writing something you found later in your artistic life or something you’ve been doing all along?
I was always very interested in writing and did a lot of it on my own. When I moved to New York I took a writing class with Tina Howe at Hunter college and she opened up my thinking about so many things. She was the first person who I think instinctually knew that my writing was an extension of my acting–that they were part of the same muscle. But writing is much harder than acting, for me. You’re alone struggling with this thing–and the thing is basically you. It’s terrifying. But also rewarding because of that.
What was your most important discovery about The Faire that came out of the development process with Fault Line Theatre?
I learned so much about the tone of the play. About how the style reads off the page. Mostly we focused a lot on the main characters journey–an actress who works at the Faire and wants to get out. Aaron [Rossini, director of The Faire] and I talked a lot about how to make that character’s journey reflect the journey of the structure of the play as a whole. The process helped me make some crucial changes.
Your husband, Andy Bragen, is also a playwright. What’s it like having two playwrights in the house? Do you bounce ideas off one another or do you tend to keep to yourselves when you’re working on project?
We do bounce ideas off each other. He is very supportive and I think has been the main person who has given me the confidence to keep writing. He understands what it is to really wrestle with a play and that has been the best model for how to approach trying to do this.
What’s next for you? Do you have any plays that you’re currently developing?
I just finished a first draft of a play about two best girlfriends who are high school debate partners. The play is interested in female friendship, which I guess is becoming a theme for me. I’m also trying to write this play about a dystopian future where nature has disappeared and some people get to live forever. I think it might be as bad as it sounds. I have been too scared to re-read it.