Artistic Statement

Artistic Statement

In times of intense struggle, people use comforting sayings to sweep the pain and messiness of a situation under the rug. These sayings are supposed to help and assure someone that things will get better. But those generic phrases do more harm than good because no one really thinks about what they mean to who they’re speaking to. And that irony of trying to help others the way we would want to be helped, rather than trying to help people how they need to be helped, is what drives me to write. I write to find that root of love and care that is at the core (or is the cause of) every toxic, horrifying, devastating and confusing aftermath we can face in life.

When someone struggles with loving a difficult partner, we remind them that, “we all want to love and be loved unconditionally.” But should that be true if that partner starts hurting you? Or others? Should it be true if that partner changes and you are no longer compatible? Should they still love you if you do those things? We are just as quick to say everyone needs unconditional love as we are to say that person should have walked away from a situation we deem unloveable.

Those are the questions and realizations I became obsessed with when writing (un)conditional. I thought, “what would I do if the person I loved was a pedophile?” Where would I go from there? How would I wake up the following morning and continue living my life? So I wrote (un)conditional, which isn’t an answer or advice on how to solve that question. It’s a lens into what unconditional love means in a “normal” relationship vs. an “abnormal” one - and how each partner in their respective marriage loves unconditionally in their own way. And how they wake up each day in the aftermath of their choices and rectify their place in the world.

Some people write to make audiences feel like everything will be okay, I write in the hopes that audiences will go and try to figure out how to be okay. My work is designed to make you laugh at the absurdity of characters’ actions, until you’re crying because you’ve realized they’re pursuing the same basic things we all want - love, connection, acceptance, and understanding. My shows ask audiences to humanize dark and difficult subjects by asking, “Now that you’ve seen this, now that you know this can happen, where do we go from here?” Like all my plays, it’s my hope that at the end of (un)conditional, the people in the audience need to turn to the person next to them to unpack what they just watched, together.