Broadway Bullet Interview: My First Time

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My First Time, a new play in the style of The Vagina Monologues, features four actors, reciting hysterical and heartbreaking stories about first sexual experiences, written by real people -- just like you.

A first sexual experiences is one of the few things that almost every single person on this planet has in common, whether you're Paris Hilton or P. Diddy; George Clooney or George Washington, yet we rarely talk about them. Until now.

We meet with, and hear a monologue, from each of the four cast members -- Bill Dawes, Josh Heine, Kathy Searle, and Cydnee Welburn.

You can listen to this interview and many other great features for free on 

Broadway Bullet Volume 121. Subscribe for free so you don't miss an episode.
 

 or MP3 Feed with XML

 

Broadway Bullet Interview: My First Time

BROADWAY BULLET: Opening, Saturday the 28th, is the website-phenomenon, turned Off Broadway play in New York. The show is called My First Time, and based on the website, it's about, well, what do you think? People's first times. A talented cast of four actors performs everybody in all their first times, and we are lucky enough to have all of the actors here in the studio to do a brief selection from the show, as well as talk to us. So, first off, we have --

CYDNEE WELBURN: Cyndee Welburn.

 BB: All right, let's hear your monologue first.

Listen to one of Cydnee Welburn's monologues on Broadway Bullet Volume 121.

BB: All right, so, first off, I've got a couple rapid-fire questions. And that is, are you a virgin?

CW: I am not.

BB: How many people ask you that? (laughs)

CW: Not many. I'm surprised my father hasn't asked me that.

BB: With the show?

CW: No, no one's asked, no.

BB: Have you invited your mother to the show yet?

CW: Both my parents, one of my grandmothers, and my great aunt have all seen the show.

BB: Okay. So, what I'm wondering is: now, this is based on the website -- or, brought from the stories that real people have submitted, and there's like, what, forty thousand stories?

CW: Over.

BB: So, is the show like, locked down, or do you bring in new stories once in a while?

CW: We have pretty much decided which stories we're gonna be telling. Some have disappeared, but nothing new has come in. We've pretty much decided which stories are gonna be told, and how they're gonna be told.

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BB: So, from your friends, what's the funniest reaction you've heard when you tell them what the show you're in is about?

CW: A lot of raised eyebrows, a lot of excitement. They want to know if there's nudity, or if there's, you know, any simulation of first time experiences, which I assure them that there is not. It's just a great sit-down experience for everybody.

BB: All right, and what's your favorite role that you've done prior to this?

CW: I've had a lot of really amazing experiences that have run the gamut, worked with really fun people, but for me, it was doing Hair when I was in college. That was my first experience just really throwing myself into the life of a story, and really being given permission to go as far as I possibly could with delving into that lifestyle. So, that was really fun for me. It was an amazing learning experience.

BB: And, what's the widest range of characters you play over the evening in the show?

CW: Well, I tell some very tragic stories. I tell a couple of funny stories. But for me, a lot of my heavy-hitters are stories that kind of make your skin crawl, that kind of make you wonder if you should be laughing or crying, and I think that's one of the beauties of theatre, is that you experience that live moment, and you're never sure which, and you just have to go with your feelings and go with your emotions.  So, that's really exciting for me -- to tell a scary story, and look out into the audience, and just see everyone really engaged.

BB: All right, well, let's hear from your next cast member.

CW: All right, thank you so much!

Listen to one of Josh Heine's monologues on Broadway Bullet Volume 121.

BB: All right, so, what's your name again?

JOSH HEINE: My name is Josh.

BB: Josh. So, okay, a couple quick questions here. Are you a virgin?

JH: No.

BB: Since starting the show, how many people have asked you that?

JH: More than I can count, probably. (laughs)

BB: Have you invited your mother to the show yet?

JH: She was there the first night. And there's an audience participation part of the show, and I found out after the show that her story was one that was shared in front of the audience.

BB: So, what's this audience participation part? I'm gathering from the sounds of it that they drop their stories in a hat, or something? (laughs)

JH: Something like that! I don't want to give away too much, because I want people to come check out the show, but there are certain surveys that are taken, and the stories of the audience are brought to life on stage. And, I don't want to give away too much, but it won't be incriminating in any way -- I don't want anybody to be scared to come see the show.

BB: What was the challenge in theatricalizing these stories taken from the website?

JH: The challenge was -- well, there were so many stories, and that's probably the biggest challenge. There's not like -- the direct through line isn't immediately available to you, so the challenge was kind of taking these individual characters, and kind of making them your own, and just kind of weaving them into the play as a whole -- and kind of doing that seamlessly.

Active ImageBB: So, what's your favorite characters or vignettes that you get to take on over this --

JH: Oh, they're all great. They all -- they're all special in their own way. That one I just did, he's kind of a surfer dude, you know, he's just experiencing certain aspects of sex for the first time, and he's cool about it. And there's a story I have, in the middle, of just kind of a very sweet, sort of almost like suburban fairy tale story that I really enjoy living in for that moment with the audience.

BB: All right, well, we're going to hear from the next actor now, in the show.

JH: All right, thanks a lot!

BB: Thanks for coming out.

Listen to one of Kathy Searle's monologues on Broadway Bullet Volume 121.

BB: All right, so do you want to introduce yourself quickly?

Kathy Searle: Hi, I'm Kathy Searle.

BB: All right, a couple of quick questions.

KS: Yes, absolutely.

BB: Are you a virgin?

KS. No, I am not, unfortunately. No, I shouldn't say "unfortunately."

BB: Since starting the show, how many people have asked you that?

KS: Actually, you are the first. So, thank you for popping my virgin question cherry! (laughs)

BB: And, have you invited your mother to the show?

KS: I absolutely have. [My parents] are coming opening night, July 28th. They're very, very excited, my mom and my dad. I'm a little bit nervous about my sisters coming, because, you know, it's always awkward with the sisters. You will always want to think that your sisters are virgins, and pure. (laughs)

BB: So, now, with over forty thousand stories on the website that kind of launched this all, do you know what the process was like, in terms of selecting it down to a ninety-minute show?

KS: Yeah, actually, I worked with Ken Davenport before -- the creator/producer -- and whatnot. I was working on Awesome 80s Prom, and he actually had told me about this show because he had found this website and he said, "There's over forty thousand stories; I really wanna try to workshop stuff…" and he basically picked -- we have what's called "rapid fire" in the show, and he picked one-liners from little mini paragraphs from various stories. I mean, I would say we cover almost a thousand stories in the show. Even if it's just a one-liner. But he really was very specific. He wanted it to be funny, but he also wanted to have this sort of truth of what sex is. There's positives and negatives with sex, and unfortunately, not everyone has lost their virginity in a positive way, so he was very, very smart with the way he picked the stories.

BB: Now, Ken also produced Altar Boyz.

KS: Yes, he did.

BB: Any cross-promotions planned? (laughs)

KS: I certainly hope so, because, actually, it's funny, when God visits Altar Boyz, we are actually having our orgasm in the show. So, it's really kind of appropriate, because God's there and God's in our theater, too. We're right next door. (laughs) I think we should, though.

BB: All right, so, thanks so much again for joining us.

KS: Thank you. Thank you so much! And please come check out the show!

BB: All right.

KS: Thank you!

Listen to one of Bill Dawes' monologues on Broadway Bullet Volume 121.

BB: Alright, you want to introduce yourself?

BILL DAWES: Hi, my name is Bill Dawes, and I am in the play, My First Time.

BB: So, are you a virgin?

BD: No.

BB: The reason I ask this is because you've been having a promotion occasionally where virgins sometimes get in free, isn't that correct?

BD: That's correct. We have a mentalist to determine if the person is actually a virgin, or a lying whore. And a couple lying whores tried to get in, but he knew! (laughs)

 BB: So, how many people have asked you that question [are you a virgin?], though, just as a joke, since you started the show?

BD: Well, the show isn't really about virgins, although that promotion has been the biggest thing, but anyone who knows me won't ask me that -- they'll just ask me for flat-out numbers.

BB: And have you invited your mother to the show?

BD: My mother and father live in California, but they've seen me full-frontally naked on stage before in an  Off Broadway show, and they've seen me do some pretty crazy downtown New York theater, so they'd be okay with this.

BB: This is probably tame.

BD: This is the most sanitized play they would ever come see me in, actually. Pretty much true, yeah.

BB: This is your Disney play?

BD: My dad's a born-again Christian. My dad's kind of the Bible-bashing guy, so I think he'd just be glad I'm not playing a gay character, which is what I played for two years in Gross Indecency. Believe me, they're all right if I'm naked, if I'm killing people, but (puts on Southern accent) my Southern dad doesn't want me to be -- anyway, you don't want a therapy session here, do you?

BB: Well, isn't that what the show kind of is, -- an entertaining therapy session? What's been the favorite part of putting together the show, for you?

BD: Well, really, it's really cool, the process of taking all of these primary sources. Like I said, my first play was Gross Indecency, which took all these primary sources and put them together in a play. The process of doing that with this subject matter -- taking these stories and rearranging them in lines to rhythm and flow, there's something very -- kind of -- mathematical about it, and very cool, discovering rhythms, and where jokes are, and how we all have to work together and create some synchronicity. It's also just really cool to create different characters -- like, I get to go up there and be a goofy kid who got laid in a plane, and then I get to go up there and be a dubious, quasi date rapist, and I get to kind of completely mix with the expectations of what people think I'm going to be, whenever I start talking. That's what I like.

BB: Now, are any of the actors or creators involved with the show -- are any of your stories actually in this?

BD: No, but it's funny you said that, because I've read the website that this came from, and, you know, there are some good stories there, but in general, a lot of people aren't writing funny, funny stories. They're writing honest stories, or kind of salacious stories, but there weren't a lot of funny stories. But I toured with Jamie Kennedy and his story of his first time is hilarious, so I wrote the story of his first time on the website. As soon as I got cast in the play, I was like, "We need some comedy," so I wrote this story, which is absolutely -- it's about him having sex in the 80's, and it was like, you know, back in the 80's, they didn't like, trim and shave to make it look like an NBA basketball court. It was like a bush. Everything was like an Amazon Rainforest.  It looked like a member of the Jackson 5 was trapped between her legs. And he does this whole thing about how he couldn't find it, and when he finally does, it's right away, and he ends up putting flour all over her vagina, trying to try it up, like he was trying to make pussy cookies -- and she didn't get pregnant, but I think she did get a yeast infection. So, it's like a funny, like, stand-up bit, and Ken saw right through it. He goes, "Yeah, I could tell. A stand-up comic wrote that bit."  So, it didn't get used. So none of the stories are us at all.

BB: All right, so, now, the show is opening on the 28th, and it's for an open run, correct?

BD: Yeah, the show opens July 28th at New World Stages. Every Thursday, Friday and Saturday, and it's an open run, so it could run for three more months or three more years.

BB: Or three more weeks, so do rush to see the show.

BD: Yes!

BB: I always say, never take it for granted that a show's an open run.

BD: Yeah, yeah, yeah. Although tickets have been selling well, and people like it. Word of mouth is good.

BB: And where do they go?

BD: They go to ticketcharge.com or telemaster.com telecharge.com to get their tickets. And they can go to the website, which is www.myfirsttimetheplay.com, and it's at New World Stages, on 50th Street between 8th and 9th Avenues, every Thursday, Friday and Saturday night at 8 o'clock.

BB: All right, well thank you so much for joining us!

BD: Thank you!

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You can listen to this interview and many other great features for free on 

Broadway Bullet Volume 121. Subscribe for free so you don't miss an episode.

  or MP3 Feed with XML


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