McKnight National Residency and Commission recipient Francine Volpe is workshopping her commissioned play Bringing Jimmy Home at the Playwrights' Center this week. It is the second of three week-long workshops for Francine this year. There will be a public showing of the play in progress in mid-June; keep an eye on this site for details. To tide you over, here is a mini-interview with Francine:
What kind of stories have you been interested in writing recently?
Almost all of my plays take place at the intersection of class tensions and sexual tensions. I love psychological thrillers. I'm a big fan of 70's films like Klute.
How do you write political plays, or plays with a message, without becoming didactic?
Finish this sentence: If I weren’t a playwright I would be…
A stylist. When I’m working as a dramaturg I can often intuit what a playwright wishes to express even when it’s not quite on the page... Sometimes when I’m walking through the streets of New York or I’m on the subway I can see what a person means to express with their clothes or hair or make-up and I want to make their vision clearer and more potent.
How can artists support other artists?
Pay them. Or help them to get paying work.