To read a short excerpt from my play, RED, click here.
I’ve always wondered why Red Riding Hood was fooled by the wolf’s poor disguise in grandmother’s nightdress. Why did this smart girl succumb to the wolf? Surely this is a question for all women who remain in abusive relationships. Why do we stay? The fairy tale Bluebeard takes up the question of believing, despite evidence to the contrary, in the silver-tongued predator. In my own experience of Bluebeard, I would have believed him had he crawled through my window at midnight wearing a balaclava, knife between his teeth, convincing me I ordered pizza and he’s the delivery boy. Moonlight plays the blade, but I’m already rolling over, making room in my bed–and I don’t even like pizza.
But when I wrote my play, RED, and once again had Red meet the wolf in the woods, I began to understand my personal motivation. I realized Red speaks out of my experience as the daughter of immigrants growing up in a seaport town on Canada’s west coast. Loneliness, and lack of intellectual and aesthetic engagement, informs the hunger my character, Red, conveys in the following scene, excerpted from the last few minutes of Scene 4: Are You Really a Grand-mother? The set is a surreal forest of men’s suits strung up from battens in the fly, hanging midair.