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BWW Interview: Candace Bushnell Shares Details About Upcoming World Premiere of IS THERE STILL SEX AND THE CITY?

'Is There Still Sex and the City?' The answer is a resounding 'yes!' and Candace Bushnell is about to tell you why.

BWW Interview: Candace Bushnell Shares Details About Upcoming World Premiere of IS THERE STILL SEX AND THE CITY?

'Is There Still Sex and the City?' The answer is a resounding 'yes!' and Candace Bushnell is about to tell you why in her world premiere one-woman show, set to take the stage at Bucks County Playhouse beginning June 22.

Bushnell is the international best-selling author of Killing Monica, Summer and the City, The Carrie Diaries, One Fifth Avenue, Lipstick Jungle, Trading Up, Four Blondes, Is There Still Sex in the City?, and of course it's predecessor, Sex and the City, the basis for the iconic HBO series, now being rebooted for HBO Max.

The acclaimed author will bring her masterful brand of storytelling to audiences with 'Is There Still Sex and the City?', detailing her arrival and rise in New York City, her insights about love and relationships, and much more.

'Is There Still Sex in the City?', staged by Bucks County Playhouse Artistic Associate and Broadway's ('Mrs. Doubtfire') Lorin Latarro, will run through July 18, 2021.

For more information visit: buckscountyplayhouse.org or call 215-862-2121.

We spoke with Candace Bushnell about the process of writing the show, what audiences can expect, the impact of her work, and much more!


When did you decide that you were going to write this one woman show, 'Is There Still Sex and The City'?

Actually, it was a couple of years ago, I think it was before the book came out. You always sell the rights to books to TV, and I decided to carve out a one-woman show. I met somebody, Marc Johnston, who did a one-man show for David Foster, and he said, "I think I can work with you, and I think that we can make a one-woman show." Really, the idea was that it would travel, and we were imagining something pretty simple. And then I just went ahead and started writing it. And I've been writing it for a couple of years. I did other things as well, but it's something that I just kept going back to and working on, and Marc started telling people about it, and they got really excited. So, we got Lorin Latarro, who is amazing, to be the director, and then the producers at Bucks County Playhouse wanted to do it. So, that's really how it happened. They read what I had written and they said, "We want to do this." And now, it's happening!

I'm so glad it's happening! How much material that is in the play is in the book, and what was it like expanding upon that material to turn it into something you could put on stage?

It really is a one-woman show. It tells my story and how I created 'Sex and the City', and then it goes beyond 'Sex and the City' to 'Is There Still Sex and the City?'. It takes some things from the book 'Sex and the City', and it takes a few things from the book 'Is There Still Sex and the City?'. But, they're different mediums. So, there are some things that are dramatized that are part of the narrative, and the interesting thing is that this summer is the 25th anniversary of the publication of the book 'Sex and the City'! So, it just seemed really appropriate in a way, it is 25 years later, and now it's 'Is There Still Sex and the City?' And I talk about some of my observations about heterosexual relationships, which, I've had plenty of experience! It's how 'Sex and the City' came about, who I am, and then, moving forward, really through 'Lipstick Jungle', and then back around to 'Is There Still Sex and the City', and things come full circle.

And, this is your stage debut, correct?

Yes, it is!

Are you excited to get on stage and perform? How do you feel about tackling the performance aspect?

Strangely fine. When I look back on my life, I was always in little plays in high school, and then I went to acting school for a minute, but there were just a lot of things about it that I didn't like. But, who doesn't have that dream? When you first come to New York, 'Oh my god, I'm gonna write a play and I'm gonna be in it!' It's a huge dream! And you just think, 'It's never going to happen.' I've been in New York a long time... so we're doing it! I used to do a lot of lectures, I've done a lot of public speaking, I haven't done anything that was scripted. So, I'm excited about it. Thank God for Lorin. They all tell you where to go and stand and all of that, and it's very physical.

Tell me more about working with Lorin and the Bucks County Playhouse team! What's that process been like of bringing it to the stage with them?

It's really been terrific. It's a very different experience than TV. It feels very immediate. There are so many people in TV, I mean, there are so many people who have to approve things, and it takes so long to get to making it. So, this feels very immediate, on your feet, and also, for me, I love the idea of having an audience. It's very intimate, but you feel like, 'I'm here with 400 of my friends.'

You are so well known, and your work is so well known, is there anything in the show that you think is going to surprise audiences?

Probably, yes! I think so. I don't want to give things away, but yes, I think there are definitely things that will surprise audiences. Absolutely.

No matter how well known you get it's impossible for everybody to know everything, and I know people are really excited for this.

Well, it's about a real New York experience. It's the experience of coming to New York and really wanting to make it. And then making it, and what happens after, that's part of it as well. And it's such a New York Story. I haven't really talked much about my life before 'Sex and the City', but there's a huge part of my life, obviously, that led to the writing of 'Sex and the City', and then everything that happened after. The TV show is really a small part of it.

Your work has only gotten more and more popular as the years go on, they're currently rebooting 'Sex and The City', how does it feel for you knowing that your work has had such a massive and lasting cultural impact?

It's very rewarding. But, honestly, it's not something that I think about a lot. Because what this is really about, it's about the doing. It's about doing this, and this is an opportunity to explore a different medium, which I have to say, I really love it. In some ways it's like writing books, because when you're writing a book you're playing all the different parts in your head. But the great thing is, I don't have to spend 8 hours a day alone, which is what writing requires. Writing books is a lot of alone time. So, this is great. And it plays into a different side of my personality.

This show is opening in a few weeks and will run for about a month. You said earlier that you were thinking this was going to be a traveling sort of show, do you have your eyes set on an eventual Broadway run? An Off-Broadway run?

We're really hoping to come to New York. Everybody is waiting to see what's going to happen, because nobody knows, right? So, yes, they are definitely eyeing New York.

That feels like the fitting place for your show to end up, for sure.

Well, it's about New York, and it just feels like now is the time when people want to be off their screens. People have kind of had their fill of screens, and I feel like people want something live, and they want something communal when they're with other people. People have been lonely during this pandemic. I feel like this is something that you come to with your girlfriends. And you have a night of it. And you have some laughs. There's the poignancy of, everyone's life, including mine, has ups and downs. And it's had plenty of downs. And that's like all of our lives. When you get to be over 50, some good stuff's happened to you, but some bad stuff's happened as well. So, it's a way not to feel alone.

How has your relationship with New York City changed throughout the years?

This is one of the things that I talk about in the show. There have been times when I've left the city and I've come back. It's kind of circular. On the other hand, I've lived here since I was 19, and I've always lived in Manhattan, so I can't really talk about Brooklyn and those places, but I've literally walked so much of the pavement in Manhattan, and I can think of so many things that happened in lots of different buildings. So, it's almost like it's just a part of my brain.

Do you think there is still sex and the city?

Yes, there is! Maybe it's changed a bit, but yes.


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