Interview: David Dean Bottrell CANNOT POSSIBLY ACCEPT THE DEATH OF Him YET

David Dean Bottrell will bring his two one-man shows Dear Mr. Bottrell, I Cannot Possibly Accept This & The Death of Me Yet in rep to the Matrix opening July 10th.

By: Jul. 06, 2024
Interview: David Dean Bottrell CANNOT POSSIBLY ACCEPT THE DEATH OF Him YET
Get Access To Every Broadway Story

Unlock access to every one of the hundreds of articles published daily on BroadwayWorld by logging in with one click.




Existing user? Just click login.

Interview: David Dean Bottrell CANNOT POSSIBLY ACCEPT THE DEATH OF Him YET

David Dean Bottrell will bring his two one-man shows Dear Mr. Bottrell, I Cannot Possibly Accept This and The Death of Me Yet in rep to the Matrix opening July 10, 2024. David graciously took time out of his rehearsals to answer a few of my queries.

Thank you for taking the time for this interview, David!

It's my pleasure, Gil. Thanks for wanting to know about the shows! I'm super proud of them.

What factored into the decision to perform Dear Mr. Bottrell, I Cannot Possibly Accept This and The Death of Me Yet in rep at the Matrix?

The wonderful Rogue Machine Theatre Company (housed at the Matrix) invited me out in January of this year to do one of my most challenging shows, The Death of Me, for a short engagement of five performances. To our surprise, all five shows sold out and got tremendous reviews. We immediately started talking about an encore, and possibly bringing my other show, Dear Mr. Bottrell, I Cannot Possibly Accept This out to L.A. In the end we decided on bringing them both. It's a lot of work, but we're all ready for the adventure.  

When did you write both shows?

Both shows were written in the spring & summer of 2023. And both wound up being done at the Pangea cabaret in New York in the fall of that year.  It all happened very quickly. Like a lot of artists, I procrastinate, grieve and complain for months, but once I start writing the process is usually pretty fast.  

Did the COVID isolation inspire The Death of Me?

Interview: David Dean Bottrell CANNOT POSSIBLY ACCEPT THE DEATH OF Him YET Absolutely. New York was the first epicenter of COVID in the US, and it was terrifying. It felt like a terrible sci-fi movie come to life. The messages were so stark: Stay inside. Avoid each other. Cover your face. And as it spread across the country, I think we all became keenly aware of our morality. It made me realize that life is happening now. So, stop with the excuses. This show had been whispering in my ear for years. I just knew it was the right time. And the best part was that the show turned out to be pretty funny. Except when it isn't.  

What is your three-line pitch for each of your shows?  

Okay, I love a challenge. Dear Mr. Bottrell, I Cannot Possibly Accept This is about those moments in life when you've just "had it.” You know you can't keep doing what you've been doing. You've just gotta change lanes. The Death of Me is about coming face to face with the end. It's made up of five interwoven stories of my encounters with (and close calls with) what we call death. Hmmm? This feels like a good time to reiterate that both shows are very funny.  

Your shows are truly one-man shows as there is no director credited, right?

I worked with a wonderful director, Guy Stroman, for a few years but he was unavailable when it came time to do the shows in New York. He was very encouraging and said, "You don't really need me. Just tell the truth." I initially panicked, but it was too late to bring somebody new in, so I just sucked it up. I listened to the audience, and they sort of told me what to do. So yes, it's definitely a one-man show.  

This is not your first time with Rogue Machine. Your David Dean Bottrell Makes Love: A One-Man Show played to sold-out audiences there in 2011. How did you first connect with Rogue Machine?

Interview: David Dean Bottrell CANNOT POSSIBLY ACCEPT THE DEATH OF Him YET It was through Andrew Carlberg, a young producer who's now an Oscar-winner! He had worked with Rogue, and out of the blue, the show turned into a huge underground hit. We only did one show a week, but it almost always sold out. I think we ended up doing thirty or forty weeks, I don't really remember. Incredible! That show changed my life.   

I remember seeing Streep Tease: An Evening of Meryl Streep Monologues at the BANG in 2009 before it made its New York debut at Joe's Pub in 2010. Hysterical!!! What do you remember of doing that show? Did Meryl ever see it or comment on it?

That was another L.A. cult classic that I was lucky to have been a part of. That show ran for four years in L.A. - mostly to packed houses. I loved that it wasn't a drag show and that we really treated it like this big, dignified tribute. The cast was hilarious. Playing Meryl/"Karen Blixen" in Out of Africa was one of the highlights of my career. Right up there with playing "Lincoln" on Boston Legal. Meryl never saw it, but I know her attorneys and agents came. She was asked about it once in an interview and she said something like, "I heard it was funny, but I don't really have any interest in seeing any show that's about me." I thought that was a very gracious response.   

You co-wrote Dearly Departed with Jessie Jones which was later adapted into a film version, Kingdom Come with Whoopi Goldberg in 2001. What do you remember of that whole endeavor?

It was a rough experience in many ways. It was my first time in the big leagues of off-Broadway and Hollywood and I was a little surprised to learn that as the budget increases so does the number of cooks in the kitchen. But it was a great education. And the original play has been produced about a zillion times around the world, so it's made a lot of people happy. And I made some money.   

How many new projects are percolating in your creative mind?  

Interview: David Dean Bottrell CANNOT POSSIBLY ACCEPT THE DEATH OF Him YET There are a bunch of things on my desk, but next up is a musical I'm co-creating with a wonderful composer-lyricist, Amy Engelhardt, who is big time crazy-talented! We're adapting a very cool piece of material. I can't believe we got the rights, but we did, so here goes!  

What’s in the near future for David Dean Bottrell?

At this moment, I'm focused on rehearsing these shows! I'm hoping we sell out all nine performances. I'm also taking one of the shows to Nantucket in August which will be really fun. And I am waiting to hear about this TV gig that might be squeezed in during the summer. Fingers crossed.   

Thank you again, David! I look forward to seeing you on the Matrix stage.

Thank you, Gil.  I'm really happy you're coming. You're gonna have a great time!

For tickets for Dear Mr. Bottrell, I Cannot Possible Accept This and The Death of Me Yet through July 21, 2024: click on the button below:




Comments

To post a comment, you must register and login.







Videos