We asked Zoë a few questions about life/love/Reel to Reel. Her answers had us feeling the feels and rolling on the floor laughing. Read on!
You’ve worked with John Kolvenbach a few times. What do you like about John’s writing/about working with him? Why do you keep coming back?
John's plays are about good relationships and love. A lot of plays depict the heartache and damage and torture of relationships, which has its place, but John's work is so refreshing and fun because it's about healthy, vibrant, sexy, successful love. The first show I did of John's was Love Song and it left me thinking- oh god! THAT'S the kind of relationship I've been looking for (even though I was playing an imaginary criminal). I walked away from that play knowing the kind of devotion and love I wanted to fight for in life. I think audiences see John's plays and then go home and make out with their husbands or wives that they've been with for an eternity. His plays celebrate the good in love and they tip their hat to the true heroes: those who dare to love and keep loving.
Do you have any funny or exciting stories from previous productions? Goofs, triumphs, unexpected connections?
Andrew Pastides and I did another of John's shows together called Half n Half n Half where I had to be in a lobster costume for one of the three halves. It was a farce. Jim Ortlieb played my boss and he also had to wear a lobster costume. At one point we had to hide in a chest and scream our faces off as a giant spider tried to attack us. At our lowest point, Jim's fake mustache came partway off because his lobster had been dunked in the tub and I spent five minutes of stage time trying to re-attach his mustache with my cloth lobster claw.
Your last show here was Mauritius in Loretta’s first season at Magic. How does it feel to be back?
I loved doing Mauritius and working with Loretta. I think Loretta is a visionary and an outstanding director. That was one of my first shows out of school, and I couldn't have landed in a more inspiring place than the Magic. It was a very special show and group of people, and I grew tremendously with Loretta at the helm. Months later, Loretta invited me to see a reading of John Kolvenbach's Goldfish in New York. Andrew Pastides was in the reading, and I remember being overwhelmed with his performance and the play itself. I thought, who is that actor and who the hell wrote this play? Later that week Loretta invited me for a drink at John's apartment to officially meet John and Andrew. We all hung out and talked and had a great time. The next morning, John called Loretta and asked "how well do you know that Zoë person that was here last night because my wallet is missing." He later found it under his Cuisinart and then asked me to come read his play Love Song, where I played a woman who breaks into people's apartments and steals their belongings. And that was the beginning of our incredible friendship and collaboration.