Barbra Dillon, Fanbase Press Editor-in-Chief: Your play, #metoo, is currently appearing as part of the Hollywood Fringe Festival. What inspired you to tell this story, and how would you describe your creative process in bringing it to life?
Star Stone: What inspired me initially, was needing to tell my own story. I was disenchanted with the male gaze in films, the male narratives, men telling stories about women for women, and I did not want to participate, as an actress, in theater, or film productions that did not accurately portray women, as I know them and understand them to be. The female archetypes were often limited and one-dimensional. So, I began my journey of storytelling through slam poetry and found my voice at local slams in Oakland, CA. During this time, I began developing a piece to normalize sex work and give sex positive communities visibility. I workshopped a 10-minute piece of this at the Marsh Theater in San Francisco; however, I did not have enough material to continue when I met my now director, Jessica Lynn Johnson, and began taking her classes. We worked on developing my show, my story, and what came through was really a piece about sexual development and how I was not only influenced by a sex negative culture, but also sexual assault.
BD: Given that the performance is a one-woman show, how do you balance the workload of the production, and do you feel that the various roles enhance your creative process?
SS: Balancing the workload is a learning curve for me. Disciplining myself to adequately give time to the rehearsal process, and marketing on social media, and supporting other artists in Fringe and cross promote in person… it's definitely a process and takes a lot of time to develop that muscle. I actually stopped working temporarily to devote 100 percent of my efforts to the show.
BD: What do you hope that audiences will take away from the show?
SS: I hope the audience will understand what it feels like to be a woman in America right now, how much our society and present culture is not “woke” to consent culture, and that we really need to make some radical changes to promote safety of women, healthy relationships, and empowered self images.
BD: What makes the Hollywood Fringe Festival an ideal venue for #metoo?
SS: I see the Fringe as a safe space to “workshop” edgy pieces, pieces that may or may not have a chance at being widely produced without a “do it yourself” mentality. The environment of Fringe is very supportive and I felt I could successfully produce a run of my show and see how it feels, and what would need to change in order to produce it in larger theaters and for a wide range of audiences.
BD: The show will be appearing at Studio C in Hollywood through June 22, 2018. Are there any future plans to perform the show at other venues?
SS: Not yet! My dream and goal is to take the show to New York and complete a professional run at an off-Broadway house. I would also like to travel with this show to expose this topic to a wide variety of patrons and tour college campuses and women’s conferences or festivals.
BD: Are there any upcoming projects that you would care to share with our readers?
SS: Yes! I have a collection of poetry that I have been actively editing, and I am seeking the right publisher to work with. I do perform excerpts regularly and have a show coming up on June 23rd in downtown Los Angeles.
BD: Lastly, what would you like to tell readers who want to learn more about and purchase tickets for #metoo?
SS: Click here to visit the site for the show.