It is the age-old question that is best answered in the most simplistic of ways:
“How do you know you’re in love?”
“Well, you just know.”
But really, what does that mean? And how do you just “know?”
Well, you can start with the never-ending smiles. The goose bumps. The mind wandering and endless giggles. And the overwhelming feeling that comes over a person when their beloved comes into view.
It is a question that has fascinated Amy Munz for quite some time. Munz constructed these questions within herself ever since those discoveries came over her as a young girl entering womanhood. For Munz, the aforementioned question may be impossible to answer, but it certainly hasn’t stopped her exploration of the subject in her debut one-woman show in San Francisco.
“Patterns – For Some Reason it Really Tickled Me,” is Munz’ solo show that is also the first production of The New Stage, the company she founded. The show, which opens Wednesday, July 16th, is a total theatre experience, which was first crafted during her time at Northwestern University in Evanston, IL. Not only is it a theatre production, but also a show that approaches something more, with just as much emphasis being put on videos Munz created herself. Munz also wrote and will perform three distinct characters that she moves through the various acts of the piece.
“The show is about love as a paradox, where we try to get into this space where love makes total sense, and the next moment, it is a total possibility,” said Munz, 23, a native San Franciscan. “It is a response to people talking about love as a drug, how it affects you in invisible ways, maybe even in disorienting ways.”
Munz’ desires to bring about a show that focuses more on love through a very specific lens helped fuel the piece she has created.
“I wanted to tap into a feminine perspective on love,” said Munz. “There are biological explanations as to why you fall in love, why you feel happy, and I wanted to be aware of the physical explanations. I just did a whole bunch of research, and slowly put this piece together.”
Munz’ acting professor at Northwestern, Henry Godinez, was the perfect person to take on her play as the director. A female perspective is something Godinez has plenty of experience with. Growing up with a single mom and five sisters, and now with his wife and two daughters, he surely was able to help Munz shape those thoughts and beliefs that permeate her show. He also has hopes for what he wants the audience to take away from the piece when they leave.
“I think I would like the audience to leave thinking about love in their own life, their own experiences and the many facets of love,” said Godinez. “My hope is that they would leave and not take love and relationships for granted as we do.”
In addition to her obvious passion for theatre, the show gives Munz an opportunity to really delve deeper into her film work. While often in a play, video helps establish the scene. But for Munz, that is merely the beginning.
“I’ve always loved video, loved movies and loved experimenting with a camera,” said Munz. “For me, the videos are not about setting up the environment or giving facts, but it’s about conveying the emotional impact and our aesthetic response to images.”
The bubbly and charming Munz is thrilled about where her play is headed. For her, it does not feel like your basic opening of a new show. By virtue of creating three distinct characters, a fresh new take on media and creating a new company in her hometown, Munz is anxious to raise the curtain in just a few days.
“There are points in the process where there would be questions, and one of those questions was about what theatre is now,” said Munz. “I want to push with this piece. This is about a new type theatre. There are rules I may be breaking to discover new ground.
“It’s a tough process but it’s real exciting.”
One of her biggest fans is Godinez, who calls her piece deeply personal in a beautiful way.
“I am very appreciative for a really unique, singular artist like Amy Munz,” said Godinez. “She really opens up the boundaries of what theatre can be.”
WHAT TO KNOW IF YOU GO
The New Stage presents “Patterns – For Some Reason it Really Tickled Me”
Created and performed by Amy Munz
Directed by Henry Godinez
One hour and 45 minutes, with a 15-minute intermission
July 16th – Aug. 16th
Dennis Gallagher Arts Pavilion
66 Page St., San Francisco, CA
Dennis Gallagher Arts Pavilion
66 Page St. San Francisco, CA
July 16, 2014 through August 16, 2014.
For tickets, call (800) 838-3006, ext. 1 or visit www.thenewstage.com