Sarah Anne Zwirek (spellmyheart) wrote,
Sarah Anne Zwirek
spellmyheart

yay!

for my acting class' end of the year project, we are doing a one act play called "Potholes" by Gus Kaikkonen...and last week I emailed Gus, the playwright, with questions and he EMAILED ME BACK!he is also an actor and a director and was in the original production of "Equus" on broadway...so I got to ask him some questions about acting, too.how exciting! here's how it went:

Hi Gus!
My name is Sarah Zwirek and I am a student at the Pittsburgh Highschool
for the Creative and Performing Arts in Pennsylvania.
Currently in my acting class at school, we are working on your play
"Potholes" for our 'end of the year project'. The play itself seems to be
very simple and unique and I am very excited to be participating in it.
What were your intentions by writing this piece and is there anything you
would like the actors and director to keep true to it? What inspired you
to write it? The more I analyze the script, the more I realize that the
text and ideas are very true to real life.
I have also researched that you are also an actor. Do you have any advice
for aspiring actors/ actresses?
If you could please respond, it would be extremely helpful and greatly
appreciated.
Thank you.

Sincerely,
Sarah Zwirek

Sarah,
Thank you for your e-mail. I wrote POTHOLES because, at the time, it
seemed to me, that it was completely impossible to talk to anyone about
anything and be understood. I actually had the conversation at the top of
the play in real life. It was so absurd that I went into another room and
wrote it down--that little conversation inspired the entire play. Please
take your time with that conversation when acting it--don't rush it--let
it happen for the first time--and let each absurdity drop. There was a
little cafe on the corner of 53rd and 8th Avenue, which is where I
imagined the play taking place. It had been a frightening neighborhood
and now it's quite swank. Now that Tom Brokaw is no longer on the news it
might be better to change the first line to "Was Tom Brokaw on the
news..."
Advice to young actors? I'm directing Uncle Vanya at Juilliard right now
and I'll give you the same advice I gave the Juilliard student recently: a
life in the theatre can be a wonderful thing--my life in the theatre is
pretty swell. I started acting as a 12 year old in 1964 and I'm still at
it. But an actor should only pursue a life in the theatre if the actor
has no other choice. If there's anything else the "actor" can do and be
happy, then a life in the theatre is not for him or her. It's as much a
disease as a vocation. If you've no other choice, then you can survive
the inevitable rough patches. I had no other choice and I had a few rough
patches, but for the last twenty years it's been an excellent life.

All the best.

Gus Kaikkonen

 


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