One question for: Young Jean Lee, cabaret neophyte
Wed Feb 16 2011
We asked the provocative writer-director about her upcoming cabaret debut with her band, Future Wife, scheduled for Joe's Pub April 1--30:
We suspect that all experimental auteurs really long to be rock stars. Or is this more of a torch-song-cabaret-type act?
We're Gonna Die will resemble a traditional cabaret act or rock show about as closely as my last show Lear resembled Shakespeare's version (i.e., not very closely). I'm definitely not trying to reinvent myself as a performer or singer or anything like that. The show isn't about me. I'm designing it so that it could be performed by any ordinary person, and I'm using myself as a guinea pig so that I can't cheat by casting someone with natural performance ability (although I've already cheated a little by putting together a charismatic rock band). The challenge for the director Paul Lazar and me will be to make a compelling show that doesn't depend on star quality or a cult of personality: a show where you look at the performer and think, I could do that. It's a show about being a regular person who's going to suffer and get old and die just like everyone else, and kind of celebrating that fact.