The Playwright's Perspective...
Transporting. Timely. True. 

Playwright Joseph Zettelmaier on why you need to see the Chicago premiere of The Scullery Maid:
Why did I write The Scullery Maid? Multiple reasons, like any other story. I'd had a desire to write a medieval drama for several years. I'd long been fascinated with the histories of the Plantagenets, but that didn't narrow it down at all! There were so many great English rulers to choose from! And so I did what I always do, which is dive headfirst into research. When I stumbled upon a story of a Jewish servant in Edward III's employ who met a very unfortunate end...something in the story caught my attention. I don't want to give away too much, but suddenly my take on the story shifted from the ruler to those who are ruled. I became fascinated by the lives of those who served these incredibly powerful kings in times of great war. 

As for what the play might say to a modern audience...The Scullery Maid is a story about servants as much as kings. I wrote this play during what I thought was a contentious election cycle here in America (I had no idea what was yet to come). What I kept being struck by was this: Perhaps because of the internet age, of social media, of a change in neutrality of the press...there seemed to be an underlying belief that we truly knew and understood the motivations, beliefs, and plans of our future leaders. That's where my version of King Edward came from...a man beloved by his people (most of them, anyway), but friends and foes alike didn't necessarily know why he did what he did. And when someone far beneath his station finally comes face to face with him, she must also come to terms with the fact that the truth is larger than what we decide it is.
Idle Muse Theatre Company | 773-340-9438   | IdleMuse@Idlemuse.org | IdleMuse.org
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