The Interview Process: Olivia Lilley
Olivia Lilley is an up and coming playwright. People got to step up their game to compete with Lilley’s tough as nails game. In her most recent play ‘THAT what makes her an icon’ she kicks out the un-metaphorical jams. Beach Sloth was fortunate enough to sit down with this rising-ass star and ask her a few deep personal questions about her views on art and shower curtains.
Question 1: What makes someone an icon?
A person becomes an icon when young people start aspiring to become them when they grow up.
Question 2: Why do you work with this specific format? Why not poetry or prose? Why plays?
I like the playwriting because it allows for multiple people to experience something at the same time and watch other people experiencing it around them. Like everybody is taking a shit together. When I was little, I thought doing things in groups was just awful. It took forever for a group to leave and actually go someplace. I much preferred doing things alone. But sometimes, like at the midnight showing of one of the Harry Potters, being in a group was the most powerful thing in the world, experiencing something altogether. So like being in love, its highs are HIGH and its lows are LOWS. I guess that’s how I like my art.
Question 3: The play takes place in several different cities. Is this a way of saying all of America’s youth is the same?
I wanted to write a play that would be a “My Generation” play. I was looking to the film “Reality Bites” as inspiration. I feel like, in the 21st century, it would be appropriate for stories in multiple cities to intersect the way people in the same apartment complex in the 90’s did. The world is much smaller. I wanted this to reflect that. Also, I don’t necessarily think all youth are the same, but I do think that a computer programmer and a singer songwriter from the Mountains of Virginia have a lot in common.
Question 4: Hey baby
Question 5: Do you think love is a mostly sad or happy experience?
Like I said, love is full of very high highs and very low lows. Or maybe that’s just being young and infatuated. I don’t know if I have ever been “in love”. But I have certainly been young and infatuated.
Question 6: Billy Joel plays in the background in one particular scene. Is there another non-Billy Joel song you could have used?
I love the phrase “When will you realize Vienna waits for you?” It is such a positive message. Like if you have a dream, you will achieve it. You just have to decide when. I think more people should think like that. If they did, more would get done. So no, I don’t think there’s another song that could go there.
Question 7: Is partying a major part of your life?
I used to get paid to party. I was a club promoter. Usually I am the first one who falls asleep at the party. But occasionally, I’m the last.
That’s when I’m not “on the job”.
Question 8: Are you a punk rock kid?
I wish. No, unfortunately, I was a musical theatre kid.
Question 9: What do you miss most about your childhood?
I miss not having to work a day job.
Question 10: What art movements are you most excited for in the future?
Question 11: If you could have an ideal shower curtain what would it look like?
I used to have the ideal shower curtain. It was Gene Kelly’s shadow during singing in the rain, aqua colored, frolicking amongst falling aqua colored droplets.
“Singing in the rain”
I want my play to give people a hug - Olivia Lilley