The Page to Stage: That’s What She Said Playwright’s Festival is less than two weeks away and we couldn’t be more excited!! Everyone has been working so hard to put these Staged Readings together and we can’t wait to have an audience.
In order to introduce our writers, we asked them to answer a few questions about themselves and their inspirations. Today, we are presenting the first of our authors, Synida (Syn) Fontes. Her play “Butterfly in the Ashes” is an unflinching and darkly comedic look at the lives of four Mexican-American women. Woman and her Friend bicker and stick together as she goes through a pregnancy, deals with her ward, Mariposa, who lives completely in a childish fantasy world of her own, and avoids her intrusive overbearing aunt, Tia. It’s a peek into the mundane happenings that bind people together and how the ghosts of the past come to live in future generations.
Without further ado, let’s get to know Syn Fontes:
What was the inspiration or motivation to write the play selected for Page to Stage: That’s What She Said?
It's kind of like I had Multiple Personality Disorder (D.I.D.) and I wanted to give my alter egos a voice. I was giving myself permission to express my thoughts without a filter, and just hoped that people would laugh more than be offended. I wanted to explore the definitions of "(in)sanity" compared with individual realities--which I find greatly varying from person to person, and very flexible rather than finite. i.e. What is "crazy" to you? What is "real"? Perhaps those we most consider "mentally ill" are simply exquisitely sensitive to the effed-up the world we live in.
How long have you been writing?
I have been writing stories since I could read and write. My first grade teacher, Mrs. Fleming, gave me my first "reading". I read to the class my (extremely) short story about being a princess.(But, of course.)
Who encourages you to write?
Fellow writer/decades long-time friend/adoptive Jewish mother, Dev Ross, award-winning screenwriter (she won an Emmy and Humanitas), who is wonderfully prejudiced when it comes to her baby (me). (i.e. I'm the prettiest, smartest, most talented, etc.) Also, the SUPER BAD-ASS women writers of LA FPI (Los Angeles Female Playwrights Initiative) as spearheaded by our intrepid leader, Ms. Jennie Webb!
Who are your influences?
I've long said that I want to be the female Oscar Wilde/John Leguizamo combo.
What do you find gratifying or freeing by writing for theater that you don’t find in writing for other mediums?
Theater has no limits, even regardless of funds (i.e. lack thereof) because of suspension of disbelief. The audience being present--right there with us-- allows them to go along with us, frees their imagination. Watching something happen right before our eyes allows us to believe in it.
What are five things you can’t live without?
A mind that creates, a body that dances, the music in my head, the fire in my soul, and a voice for screams, song, and laughter.
What was the last book you read?
"Be Honest--You're Not That Into Him, Either" by Ian Kerner, PhD/sex therapist (like a sexy Dr. Katz, lol)
What do you have coming up next?
I am developing a one-woman show called “Romance Rehab”, or, “Dating Detox”, or…..”Pussy Power--and Power Outages”...alas, working titles, about the romp and rollercoaster of a super-sexy spinster (haha, I love that word) and her (MIS)adventures in love (and stuff resembling it...and stuff not remotely like it.)
I am also organizing the bits and chunks of a juicy tell-all about my lifetime experience as a nanny and governess worldwide with all the trimmings--oligarchs, royalty, celebrities, bodyguards, devious domestic staff, and--yes--cheating husbands dumb enough to go on OKCupid with clear photos of themselves! GUARANTEED BESTSELLER. Makes The Nanny Diaries look like Mary Poppins. Really.
“Butterly in the Ashes” is directed by Heather Enriquez and will be performed Friday, August 30 at 8pm. To purchase tickets for this show, please visit https://www.ci.brea.ca.us/1236/Page-to-Stage-Playwrights-Festival-2019 .