Playwright Spotlight: Ann Eisenberg

Hot [Quickies 15, April – May 2014 & Cupcake Reading SeriesSeptember 2013]


Where did the idea for Hot come from?
At a book group meeting we were talking about our hot flashes, and one friend said, “Some nights I just want to stand naked on my balcony.” That set my imagination on a collision course with this story.

What was your favorite moment in working on this piece?
When I realized that inspiration is everywhere.  I go to plays, watch videos, visit with friends, listen to the radio, marvel at squirrels as they leap from branch to branch, read books, wake up at 4 am after a bad dream, etc., etc., and I never know how all these experiences will affect my imagination. But they do. What a gift we have in our imaginations.

Considering this year’s theme for Quickies, what excites you more right now, science or magic?

Finish the sentence- “I love theater that…”
Explores the question of existence.

What projects are you currently working on?
I’m writing a full-length play about deer hunting.

Who is your current artist crush (any discipline)?
The writer Denis Johnson. I admired him long ago in school, and then I read The Largesse of the Sea Maiden in the recent New Yorker and fell in love all over again.

What is your favorite and least favorite word?
Favorite word: Yes.
Least favorite word: Can’t

What is the one thing you know as an artist now that you wish you could tell your younger self?
Mistakes aren’t just inevitable, they’re critical.

What was the best advice you were ever given as a theater artist?
Use your fear/avoidance of writing in your writing. Sounds simple, but it’s very layered and fascinating.

Any other thoughts you’d like to share?
LiveGirls! has supported me as an artist from the very beginning when I didn’t really believe in myself. I will always be a fan.

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Ann Eisenberg, a playwright and producer, holds a Masters in Creative Writing from SFSU. She produced Maura Halloran’s one-woman show PUSSY for the 2013 Seattle Fringe Festival; she wrote HELL IS EMPTY for Freehold Theater’s 2013 Incubator Studio Series; and she wrote and produced THE STUBBORN MULE CAFÉ for the 2012 Seattle Fringe Festival. She’s currently working on a full-length play. After 17 wonderful years in Seattle, she now lives in Menlo Park.