What the actors have to say about ‘Water by the Spoonful’
Water by the Spoonful
by Quiara Alegria Hudes
directed by Peggy Anne Siegmund
Runs June 30th - July 23rd
From Rebecca Lea McCarthy's TAG Blogpost
Cindy Ramirez was asked
What "truth" do you think the audience will walk away with after seeing this show?
Water by the Spoonful follows six different characters, all very strong and independent individuals, functioning like silos. They operate very well in this way, or so they think. They know what to do, how to act, and, in particular, the what-who-where to avoid. "Stick to the rules, and stay alive." They've forgotten how to do otherwise. Or are they scared of it?
The idea of connecting with another person can be tricky. It can work, but only on certain, very specific terms. Maybe it's just an online relationship that stays in the chatroom. Maybe it's an estranged mother-son relationship where all they do is ignore each other. In the play, the characters eventually go outside of their silos' well-oiled mechanisms. That's where they discover the unpredictable ride of heartbreak and love when truly relating with another flesh-and-blood human being.
So my truth to y'all? As my character, Odessa says: "Stop being a highly functioning isolator and start being a highly dysfunctional person!"
Amrita Mallik was asked
What is it about your character that speaks to you personally?
Just like Yaz, I am an over-educated woman of color who occupies multiple roles at any given time. Trying to fashion a cohesive identity out of all the things the world expects, and needs, you to be is a constant challenge of both Yaz's and my own daily existence. I profoundly feel for Yaz: for her confusion about who she is, for the anger that stems from never fitting in neatly anywhere, for always having to struggle to figure out what she is supposed to be and why she is here. I am fascinated by the journey she takes from teaching at an elite college to focusing on helping her people in the barrio, and the way she has to code-switch with her use of language in different situations. Connecting everything is her big heart and her profound love for her family. It is a challenge and a joy to inhabit her world, and to get to grow with her every night.
Mark Bush was asked
For this show, Water By The Spoonful, what is one thing about your characters that speaks to you?
Momken men fadluck ted dini gawaz safari. (You will find out what this means when you see the show.)
In this play, Water by the Spoonful, what is it about your character Orangutan, that speaks to you personally?
I like being able to play the dichotomy of my character. Orangutan has a tough exterior. She is sarcastic and sometimes just downright mean. But I find that all this is just a defense mechanism she developed to hide a vulnerability. She's someone who never really quite fit in and always felt like an outcast. She's just looking for her place in the world and real human connection. I think anyone can relate to that.
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In a far corner of the internet, moderator "Haikumom" (aka Odessa Ortiz) leads a chat room for recovering drug addicts, From behind their screens, these individuals who might never encounter each other in real life -- a student, an IRS-pusher, and a financier-- forge a bond as strong as blood. Off the computer, however, in a Puerto Rican neighborhood in North Philly, Odessa Ortiz's real-life family is falling apart. Her nephew, Elliot, has returned from Iraq both physically and emotionally broken. Her niece, Yaz, is unable to reconcile her identity as a North Philly girl from the barrio with her upper-crust, intellectual lifestyle. Her sister, who was the mother that Odessa could never be, is dying of cancer. Inventive and timely, Quiara Alegria Hudes' Pulitzer Prize-winning Water by the Spoonful is a powerful, compassionate look at the meaning of family, and the burdens we must carry to protect it.
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