In Artists Rep’s production of Circle Mirror Transformation, written by Annie Baker and directed by Allen Nause, Beth will be playing the character of Marty, who teaches an “adult creative drama” class at a small-town community center.
Winner of the 2009 Obie Award for Best New American Play, the New York Times called Circle Mirror Transformation "an absolute feast” and declared it, “the kind of unheralded gem that sends people into the streets babbling and bright-eyed with the desire to spread the word.”
The play follows Marty’s six-week class and the real-life dramas that unfold between her students: a recently divorced carpenter, a high school junior, a former actress, and Marty’s husband. As the students progress through seemingly shallow theatre games into deeper psychological waters, they discover that their lives have changed forever.
Asked to explain the difference between her own philosophy of acting instruction and that of her character, Beth says, “Marty’s approach to acting is therapeutic - she is directly and specifically trying to get people to see themselves. I do not believe acting is therapy, but if the process is surrendered to completely and utterly, the actor will certainly be affected on a therapeutic level." "The similarities," Beth adds, "are that we are both based in the human connection, wanting to explore self and all its possibilities."
Artists Rep says, “By the end of the class, layers of emotional baggage are stripped off to reveal how truth, change and public performance can possibly ‘set the body and spirit free.’”
“The audience is not told everything,” comments Beth, “everyone will come away with a different story – even the actors.”