Preparations for the 2016 Bay Area Playwrights Festival continue with a fresh set of new plays still in development. Our next interview is with playwright Jonathan Spector. We were fortunate enough to be able to ask him some questions about his hilarious (and at times disturbing) play Good, Better, Best, Bested about war, intimacy, and cultural consumption:
BAPF: You mentioned in a previous interview that the setting of Las Vegas appealed to you because it was an entire city built to encourage people to only care about their own pleasure in the present moment. What drew you to exploring individualized experience in contrast tocollective experience?
JS: I'm interested in how we as individuals respond to large scale events that don't affect our lives directly. How much time do we or should we take out of our day to think about, or take some action towards, a tragedy involving people we don't know? The machinery of Vegas, built to part people from their money, works particularly hard to get you to privilege what is happening right now for you over anything else.
BAPF: Additionally, the characters featured in this play are extremely
characteristic of what one assumes they will find in Las Vegas.
Theatrically, why might it be important for us to hear their opinions
about issues like foreign policy or global tragedy?
JS: It's not. What's important, at least for the play, is less about
people expressing an opinion and more about them navigating an
BAPF: Do you believe the responses in this play demonstrate a genuine
representation of our modern-day society when it comes to tragic
JS: I hope so.
BAPF: Thanks so much for talking to us! We look forward to seeing your play brought to life!