Next in our series of interviews with the folks behind the 2016 Pint-Sized Plays: writer-director Jake Arky of “Julie Kopitsky’s Bat Mitzvah”!
“Julie Kopitsky’s Bat Mitzvah” is a comedic monologue by a 36-year-old woman who’s finally stopped her hard-partying ways long enough to complete the Jewish rite of passage. Noemi Zeigler Sanchez stars as Julie.
As Jake is the only writer/director pulling double duty this year, he’s answered BOTH our playwright questionnaire and director questionnaire… and sometimes his playwright-self and director-self seem to have differing opinions.
Playwright Jake, how did you hear about Theater Pub’s Pint-Sized Play Festival and what possessed you to send something in?
Playwright Jake: I bumped into Alejandro Torres, who I had acted with in another Theater Pub show, I Like That, on the street and he mentioned he was producing Pint-Sized this year. I asked if I could send him a monologue that I had just been thinking about writing. He said yes, so I guess I was on the hook to write something good and lo and behold, it made the cut.
And, Director Jake, how did you get involved with Pint-Sized?
Director Jake: I wrote a deadly play and when no one else was brave enough to touch it, I bravely stepped up to the plate to wrestle it into the work of art you’ll see on stage.
What’s the hardest thing about writing a short play?
Playwright Jake: Keeping it a short play.
What’s the best thing about writing a short play?
Playwright Jake: Cut to the action.
What’s been the most exciting part of directing this play?
Director Jake: Rehearsals and just discovering everything the play can turn into.
What’s been most troublesome?
Director Jake: Trusting myself as a director, especially since it’s a new hat I’ve been wearing only in the last year.
Who or what are your biggest artistic influences?
Playwright Jake: TV. Lots of TV.
Who’s your secret Bay Area actor crush?
Director Jake: They know who they are.
If you could cast a celebrity in your Pint-Sized Play, who would it be and why?
Playwright Jake: Louis C.K. and Kate McKinnon, for obvious reasons.
Director Jake: The cast of The Wire. Like, every single person that was ever on that show.
What other writing/directing projects are you working on and/or what’s next for you?
Director Jake: I’m the Drama Director at a high school on the Peninsula and I’ll be directing Assassins in a brand new theater space this fall.
Playwright Jake: A play about helicopter parents who kill their children when they aren’t perfect. It’s a comedy!
What upcoming shows or events in the Bay Area theater scene are you most excited about?
Playwright Jake: All of them.
Director Jake: Anything coming up at PianoFight.
What’s your favorite beer?
Playwright Jake: Stone’s Smoked Porter.
Director Jake: Stone’s Smoked Porter.
See “Julie Kopitsky’s Bat Mitzvah” and the other Pint-Sized Plays at PianoFight on August 15, 16, 22, 23, and 29!