by Kate Marple and Melissa Bergstrom, The Perpetual Visitors Theatre Company, 2016
Available in both Kindle format and as an audiodrama
Big Work weaves together verbatim excerpts of interviews with 17 strangers into imagined conversations about the ways our world gets defined for us. The play asks whether or not we can break free and ultimately be seen by others the way we truly see ourselves. In 2014, playwrights Melissa Bergstrom and Kate Marple were curious about why the first question we always ask the people we meet is, “What do you do?” Feeling largely and unhappily defined by the ways they each made their livings, the playwrights interviewed people across the United States to find out how work shapes our lives and our sense of self. Farmers, pharmacists, retail workers, at-home parents, accountants, housekeepers, aerospace engineers, and others shared the paths they took to get where they are, the families they made along the way, the dreams they left behind and the ones they still have, and what matters most to them. What began as a simple exploration of work, quickly evolved into much deeper conversations about what is expected of us, how much control we have in where we end up, what we will leave behind, and whether or not we really can have it all. Big Work is modern day meditation on the American Dream and how we define success and ourselves in the 21st century. The portraits of these 17 real people reveal the rich inner lives we all lead, and beckon us to explore what questions we should be asking in order to truly know one another.
SafeGuard, written in 2012, is a solo documentary play based on interviews with women of military families about their experience of being on the homefront while a loved one is deployed. Staged readings included Emerson College, Cloud Place Boston, and University of Massachusetts Boston.
Untitled Hospital Sketch This 10 minute play explores the experience of being a man diagnosed with breast cancer. Workshop reading at Our Voices Festival, Wellesley College, 2014.
I am the Co-Founder / Co-Artistic Director of The Perpetual Visitors Theatre Company, a Boston-based documentary theatre company. Our mission is to foster understanding, empathy, and human connection through entertaining and compelling storytelling that explores identity, belonging, and experiences of “perpetual visitors.” We do this by creating original stage and audio pieces, leading workshops, and recording a podcast. Please visit our website to learn more about our work.