The Biggest, Bravest, Bestest Play

DayThe workshop reading presentation of Colby Day’s The Great Molly is less than two weeks away, so we took a moment to catch up with Colby and learn a little bit more about this big magical play and other big magical Colby Day creations.

Pipeline Theatre Company: What do you want us to know about your play?

Colby Day: I think it’s the biggest, bravest, bestest play I’ve written so far. It’s about magic and deception and regret and loneliness and all those things. Come see it.

PTC: When and where did you decide to start writing this play? Why?

CD: I wrote the first scene back in 2012 initially as a stand-alone piece for Pipeline’s Brave New Worksand then realized I wanted to know what would happen with this aspiring magician. At that point, the entire trajectory kind of popped into my head, which never really happens, so I knew I had to write it. I think I was interested in trying to write something on a large scale, with an epic scope. The show takes place over about ten years, and the thought of writing a serious, very American drama was really exciting. Plus, you know, magic.

PTC: What excites you most about this project?

CD: This is my first “straight play,” and I use that term lightly because it’s really half a play, half a magic show. But it’s the first full-length theater piece I’ve written that isn’t a comedy, and that’s been both exciting and terrifying. It’s incredibly sincere, like everything I try to write, but sincerity is a lot scarier when there aren’t jokes. It’s exciting to work on something that really speaks from the heart, and gets to do that with people disappearing and all sorts of other crazy magic.

PTC: In one sentence, tell us something strange that happens in your play.

CD: The evil ghost of a magician is exorcised onstage.

PTC: Are you working on anything else? What?

CD: Right now, I’m writing a western about a bandit named Lilly, which has been a fun way to take a break from this show. It’s been interesting because even though it’s a comedy with songs, I think it ends up dealing with a lot of the same thematic elements.

PTC: Two truths and a lie, go:

CD: I first came to New York for a lady, I had a small part in a local magic show from the ages of 7-9, I once had to be rescued by a float plane.

PTC: What’s next for you?

CD: I’m going to be a part of The In-Between People‘s In-Between the Lines workshop, where I’ll be presenting some version of Everything Flashes, a guided tour of a woman’s memories that I’ve been working on. It’s a really strange experience and I’d love to hear what people think. That will be Friday March 21st. You can hear about that and everything else I’m up to if you like my Facebook page, or follow me on Twitter.

Colby’s The Great Molly will be presented on Sunday, February 9, at 1PM at the Tank. Seating is limited, so make your reservation today by emailing [email protected]. This reading is presented as part of the Pipeline PlayLab.