BWW Interview: Sas Goldberg's Kiki Is Her Own SIGNIFICANT OTHER
Sas Goldberg, who plays Kiki in Significant Other, was on a mission for sushi after a recent matinee. "I'm walking in Times Square to pick up dinner at a little hole-in-the-wall," Goldberg said. "I love sushi. The slimier the better." She speed-walked back to the theater and took to her dressing room to enjoy her fish eggs.
Kiki is one of three best girlfriends of Jordan (Gideon Glick), a gay man searching for Mr. Right -- and not having much success. Kiki, Laura (Lindsay Mendez) and Vanessa (Rebecca Naomi Jones) are his tightest friends. But they are marriage-bound, soon to depart their tribe. Jordan is at a loss after the third friend weds.
Kiki, a self-absorbed 30-something, is the first of the friends to marry. She's a know-it-all, self-loving, chirpy friend who gets looser whenever she drinks. There are weddings and parties and flowing liquor, so Kiki gets pretty loose.
"The thing is, I get really protective of her," Goldberg said of her character. "If I wasn't, I would come off as callous. She treats herself better than anyone else, and says things like 'Why won't you listen to me when you know I'm always right?'
"Kiki doesn't realize how offensive she can be," Goldberg said. "I'm everybody's cheerleader in the group. I love them all," Goldberg said.
"It's so funny that it's my Broadway debut," she added. "It hasn't been lost on me how lucky we are," Goldberg said of her relationship with her cast mates. Their bond has strengthened since the production transferred from off-Broadway. "We were close last year but this move has really made us closer," she said. "I helped plan Lindsay's wedding. We're intertwined in each other's real lives," Goldberg said. And it's not faux friendship, she stressed. "It's in the fabric of our lives, the way we talk to and touch your friends.
"We all watched the Academy Awards together," she said. "No one has an ego, even backstage."
That easygoing relationship among the pals is believable because of their real kinship.
Kiki, Laura and Vanessa do their utmost to encourage Jordan. But he doesn't always listen to their sage advice. Especially when it comes to a personal email. When the women marry, their relationship with Jordan doesn't end, it just changes.
"Kiki is like a Shakespearean clown," said Goldberg. Playwright Joshua Harmon "has written zinger after zinger for her and Trip" -- director Trip Cullman - "is amazing. Every line she has is a nugget. I've grown to love this girl."
Goldberg sees her character as a renaissance woman. "Kiki motivates the others," she said. "Why shouldn't she have it all? The guy, the job, the family."
SIGNIFICANT OTHER explores friendship, love and loneliness.
"The show has the feelings of loss that we all go through in life," Goldberg said. "These are all issues for single people in their 30s. I understand how Jordan feels. Even though I was one of the first ones to marry off," said Goldberg of her posse. "Your heart goes out to your friends and you're so invested in their happiness."
Jordan has a special kinship with his grandmother, Helene Berman (Barbara Barrie). She, like Jordan, lives alone and seems to have little but her memories for company. "I think the whole relationship with Barbara is based on how they both are feeling the same feelings," Goldberg said. "That's why they both eat dinner standing in the kitchen. Loneliness. We want him to be happy."
The festive atmosphere during the party and wedding scenes seem like the real deal, including the dance moves. Choreographer Sam Pinkleton "didn't want it to look choreographed," Goldberg said. "We incorporated exercises but we are just dancing because we're loving it," she said.
Goldberg shares some traits with her character. "I have a lot in common with her. I know the guy for things, you know, to fix things, like that, Go-to guys," she said. "I know the best dry cleaner, at least I think they're the best.
"I'm a real champion of my friends, and I'm really close to high school and college friends, like Kiki," Goldberg said.
"I think she thinks she has a secret and wants to spread the gospel throughout," Goldberg said. "But after she's had some alcohol, she should say things in her head before she opens her mouth," Goldberg said with a laugh. Kiki's antics are fresh and funny, Goldberg said, not unlike her own behavior as a child.
"Making people laugh is always my favorite thing to do. I started when I was very little. My dad dressed me like a sushi roll once," Goldberg recalled. Kiki gets a lot of laughs in the show and has some fetching dance moves.
Before each show, the cast and others gather for some silly fun. "We dance and sing out loud before the first act starts. We do the 'BB countdown' which basically makes no sense but we do it before each show," she said of the pre-show ritual.
Any advice for the lovelorn?
"Ask Barbara Barrie. She has the best line: 'It's a long book.' I think that's wonderful advice," Goldberg said. "I don't have the answers, I'm just 31."
Significant Other is playing at the Booth Theatre, 222 West 45th Street.