Q&A with Constance Congdon

While preparing the resource guide for our upcoming production of Tales of the Lost Formicans, Jonathan Jones sent some questions to playwright, Constance Congdon.

What was your inspiration when you wrote TALES OF THE LOST FORMICANS?

I don’t believe in inspiration, altho’ it has been known to strike WHILE I’m writing and sometimes it’s good. I had just come off of a huge adaptation project and decided that my next play would be for me. I also had started thinking about what culture was I from? Well, I’m from Formica.

What are you hoping teenage audiences, or any audience, will take away from seeing this play?

I hope any audience member would enjoy and be moved by it. It’s about transience.

As you celebrate the 25th anniversary of the publication of the play, has its meaning changed over time?

You know, it has remained a true picture of this time in which we are living.

What advice would you give to young people interested in a future career as a playwright?

First of all, “career” is the wrong word. Would you talk about someone’s career as a poet? Playwriting is a calling. What to do? Just write plays and don’t judge them. Enjoy your own work. Genius is just doing your work on a particularly lucky day. Persistance. And fun.

Do you have other plays that may be appropriate for young audiences?

They are published by Smith and Kraus and are in the many volumes that Craig Slaight of the Young Conservatory of American Conservatory Theater has published over the years. He’s gotten many major playwrights to write for young audiences. Mine are:  MOONTEL SIX; THE AUTOMATA PIETA; NIGHTENGALES.

Tales of the Lost Formicans opens Friday night, October 23. Tickets can be purchased here:

http://events.nyu.edu/#event_id/68803/view/event