Dramaturg Maxine Kern

Check out this interview with long-time dramaturg Maxine Kern. Right now, she’s working on the 10th anniversary production of As it is in Heaven, by Arlene Hutton. The blog this comes from is maintained by Works By Women, which advocates for equity in the theatre, and organizes outings to plays by female playwrights in NYC several times a month.  If you’re interested in this cause, also check out 50/50 in 2020, an advocacy organization aiming for total gender equality in the professional theatre by 2020.

Here’s a great excerpt from Maxine’s interview:

When someone outside of theater asks you about being a dramaturg, how do you describe what you do?

I speak about the nature of dramaturgy as attention to the script, to the deep structure and meaning of the script and to the world of the play. I also talk about facilitating bridges between directors and playwrights in the rehearsal process. Ultimately, the dramaturg is a guardian of the deeper structure of the script from an objective point of view, and of the ongoing collaboration and creative process between many people and many visions as a script is realized. If the artists in the rehearsal room are both creative and true to the script, the dramaturg is a second eye to everyone; an advanced and informed audience member. If the artists are clashing and the creative process is thwarted, the dramaturg can be a bridge and sounding board to help keep rehearsals productive. A dramaturg is best when she is behind the scenes and supporting the artists, and when she is a step ahead of a script as it’s being written or as it’s being produced. Basically as a second eye, the dramaturg is engaging early on with the plays reception by an audience and giving attention to the structure of the storytelling during the creative process of creating a show.