Each month on The Subtext, Brian speaks with a playwright about life, writing, and whatever itches we are scratching.
This month Brian shares a conversation with playwright and Washington Post columnist Alexandra Petri. Her satire has also appeared in McSweeneys and the New Yorker’s Daily Shouts and Murmurs, in other newspapers, on the radio, and on TV. She has appeared on Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me and Jeopardy! as well as on a number of podcasts. Alexandra received the National Press Club’s Angele Gingras award for humor writing, was a finalist for the 2022 Thurber Prize, and won a Shorty Award for her parody Twitter account “Emo Kylo Ren.”
Brian and Alexandra talk about growing up with a love of theatre and how she got her start with a young playwrights’ opportunity at Arena Stage before heading to college, where she wrote a humor column for The Harvard Crimson (but never the vaunted Harvard Lampoon). Alexandra talks about her work at the Post, which has given her wide exposure as a humor columnist.
But theatre is never far from her heart. A Helen Hayes-award nominated playwright, a member of the second generation of the Welders playwrights collective, and a member of the BMI Advanced Musical Theatre Workshop. Her plays include Inherit the Windbag (Mosaic Theater, March 2020), Equinox (Flying V Productions), to tell my story: a hamlet fanfic (the Welders, 2017), Tragedy Averted (Capital Fringe), hook-ups (Panndora Productions). Alexandra and co-writer Jack Mitchell are currently working on a musical adaptation of the P.G. Wodehouse classic A Damsel in Distress.
Her latest book Alexandra Petri’s US History Important American Documents (I Made Up), recently published, is available wherever books are sold.
This episode can also be found here.
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