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Charlotte The Destroyer: 10 Things To Know About The Show Before You Go (2014 FRIGID NEW YORK FESTIVAL)

by Karen Tortora-Lee on February 13, 2014

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Ten Questions. Ten Answers. And One Big Decision: Rock, Paper, Or Scissors?


Charlotte the Destroyer

Production Company: Playhouse Creatures Theatre Company, Inc.

A dark comedy about a washed up children’s book author whose drinking problem and phobias sabotage her ability to write. With a deadline long past, the writer’s poisoned thoughts manifest in the twisted behavior of her characters, as our author struggles to find her way back to reality.

Show Times:

  • Wed 2/19 @ 7:05PM
  • Fri 2/21 @ 8:40PM
  • Wed 2/26 @ 7:05PM
  • Mon 3/03 @ 5:30PM
  • Sat 3/08 @ 2:05PM

Answers by Joseph Rodriguez
(Producing Artistic Director of PCTC
/ a producer of, Production Mgr. for, and an actor in “Charlotte”! Whew!)

1. Your tag line is out there on postcards and press releases so we know the PR version of what this play is about.  But when you talk to your family and friends, how do you explain the show to them?

JR:Charlotte” is a wonderfully dark flight of fancy from [writer] Megan [O'Leary]. I think it’s best described as a show that takes real people and pushes them to an extreme- and the fallout is what ensues. I love how richly realized all the characters (real and imagined) are.

2. Here’s a scenario: After the show some audience members go have a drink.  What’s the part of the show you hope they’re discussing?

JR: I hope people are talking about the ENTIRE show. But, in particular, it would be edifying to have people appreciate the skill with which Megan has blurred the lines of reality and fantasy, and still retained the humanity of all of the characters. You never feel- at least I don’t- that they are caricatures.

3. What drives your show – character, theme or plot?

JR: I truly believe all of the elements you mention are driving this piece. But, I am especially drawn in by the relationships between the characters. They are just so real it hurts.

4. In rehearsals, read-thrus, or prior incarnations, what’s the one thing someone said about the show so far that made you (or the team) the most proud?

JR: I was proudest when we were selected for the fest, allowing Megan’s work another production!

5. Let’s fantasize for a moment. Let’s take the “off-off” off. Imagine this show is on Broadway. Would that change the production itself?

JR: Well, we could have an unlimited number of Charlotte dummies. It’s tough having to glue Gretchen (Gretchen Knapp plays Charlotte) back together after every show.

6. Taking that one step further – after paying everyone what they’re worth of course, what is the most lavish, luxurious, pointless thing you would spend money on if there was no constraints?

JR: See previous answer.

7. Is there a scene, a moment, a gesture … anything at all in the show that you anticipate may get a completely different reaction depending on the audience that night?

JR: I think Charlotte’s final scene with the writer, when she hangs herself is a strikingly memorable image. Oops, spoiler alert!

8. What’s your favorite line from the show?

JR: “They’re in for a real treat: the offspring of a four foot tall mime.” I just love saying that.

9. Is the world of this play sustainable outside a theatre? In other words … do you think people live the way the characters do? Would you want a world where they do?

JR: Yes, of course, I think people live this way. It’s not really a question of whether I want to live in such a world- we already do. What the play does is show us a glimpse of ourselves- in all of the characters. What we do with that is up to each of us to struggle with.

10. You scan the audience and you see a face that stops you dead in your tracks – who is it? And why are you shocked?

JR: I wouldn’t be shocked to see anyone in one of our audiences! I just want the house FULL.


Rock, Paper, Scissors Tournament of DEAAAAATH

In the THM virtual Rock, Paper, Scissors Tournament of DEAAAAATH which FRIGID Show do you take on? And what do you throw?

CHALLENGES: Rock, paper, scissors? Wow, that is too violent for our play. HA! Seriously, I am just happy to be a part of such a talented group of artists. Let the critics throw stones at us. We don’t need to do it to each other.

Well – this is completely unexpected!  Not only do we have our first show in the history of  the Tournament of DEAAAAATH concede to their opponents - but I think this is the first time a show with DESTROYER in their title is actually turning pacifist.  Fair enough.  Unfortunately, Charlotte, that didn’t stop your fellow FRIGIDians from challenging the heck out of you.  And Destroyer is defenseless.  Let’s see how it works out for you:


Eating My Garbage who threw SCISSORS!  They slash their way to victory!

The Canuck Cabaret who threw ROCK!  Amazingly, they also bash their way to victory!

East In Red who also threw SCISSORS!  Another slash!  Another loss for Charlotte the Destroyer.

Oooof, quite a rumble here in Rock Paper Scissors Land … but fear not … it’s all pretend so your cast can walk away unscathed.

Thanks Charlotte the Destroyer for participating in The Happiest Medium’s FRIGID New York Festival 2014 Q&A.

For the rest of you don’t forget to check out Charlotte the Destroyer !


Feb 19, 7:05PM
Feb 21, 8:40PM
Feb 26, 7:05PM
Mar 03, 5:30PM
Mar 08, 2:05PM
The Kraine Theater | $10.00 / $16.00

Horse Trade Theater Group will present the 8th Annual FRIGID New York Festival at The Kraine Theater (85 East 4th Street between 2nd Avenue and Bowery) and UNDER St. Marks (94 St. Marks Place between 1st Avenue and Avenue A) February 19-March 9. Tickets are available for purchase in advance at or by calling 212-868-4444. 

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