Call Answered: Polly Lee: "Leap and the Net Will Appear" presented by New Georges
As a Leo, the Lion is my spirit animal. So when I read about an actress who is in a show where her character wants to be a lion, how could I not put my best mane forward and find out more!
I had a ferocious time interviewing Polly Lee about starring in the co-premiere of Leap and the Net Will Appear. Presented by the New Georges, Leap and the Net Will Appear tells the story of what happens when “Margie” (raised to be a good girl; wants to be a lion) leaves home. Twenty years whiz by like a moving train, logic and time escape their usual confines, steaks are eaten, tuxes are worn, the world expands, people transform, there is a rule that is breaking. In a world that is close to ours but is not ours, lions run with limitless grace, we all eat cake, have some champagne.
Leap and the Net Will Appear plays at The Flea Theater (20 Thomas Street) through June 30. Click here for tickets!
1. You are currently starring in the co-world premiere of Leap and The Net Will Appear at The Flea Theater. What made you want to audition for this show? I simply loved the script. I love the robust nature of the language; the fact that Chana Porter wields her poetic language in ways both sublime and ridiculous. I was excited to see how to theatricalize her time and place jumps; how a production would honor the dizzying experience on the page.
2. What do you relate to most about your character “Margie”? Her feeling that she’s not understanding something fundamental in the world. The intensity with which she goes about trying to figure it out.
3. What is one characteristic of hers you are glad you yourself don't possess? I’m glad that I have a sense of what I am supposed to do in the world. It helps the transitions of life have a purpose and means even when I am frustrated in my desires; I know what the goals are!!
4. In this show, your character, “Margie,” wants to be a lion. She leaves her home & family only to find that time and reality are not as fixed as she (or we) might think. How did you prepare for this role? The preparation for me was about the jumping off point. “Margie” goes on an epic and personal journey—figuring out what each bit does to her - how it affects her physically and emotionally and then making sure I started in the right spot!! As for the lions—how they move was the practical aspect; what they mean to her at the different stages of her life was the intellectual aspect. I love “Margie’s” intensity of feeling and believe the lions represent the expression of that.
5. If you were to really become a lion, what do you think your life would be like? What could you do as a lion that you can't do as a person? Ha!! I think - due to the nature of climate change - I would be hungry and worried about my life expectancy. “Margie” imagines majestic lions but I think the reality is probably more grim. As a person, I have to take public transportation, I wouldn’t have to do that as a lion!!
6. Where would you want to live as a lion? I mean - on a lush savannah with a ton of fat gazelles just waiting to be preyed upon.
7. In playing with the title of the show, when has there been a time in your life when you have leaped and the net appeared for you? There have been many examples in my life of leaping and the net appearing; from the mundane (booking a Law and Order episode when I was down to my last dollar) to the sublime (adopting the most wonderful baby at the beginning of this year, when we had been burned by an adoption scammer exactly a year earlier). Every time I step on stage is a leap like this - I suffer from crushing stage fright - yet the net is always there. I am a BIG believer in this philosophy.