PLAYWRIGHT JAMES ARMSTRONG TALKS ABOUT
"THE PIRATE PRINCESS"
Q.: WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO WRITE THIS PLAY?
A.: I was approached by a theater group on Staten Island who wanted a children's play with pirates. It so happened I had been very interested in this medieval legend of Alwida, a pirate who had ended up marrying the Prince of Denmark. Originally, I hadn't thought of it as a play for young people, but then I realized, it's got magic snakes! How much more fun can you get?
Q.: WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE PART OR LINE IN THE PLAY? WHY?
A.: My favorite part is when Alwida and Alf meet face to face, but because of their helmets, don't recognize each other. Alwida gradually figures out who this stranger is, and that she's in love with him. It's funny, but sweet, too.
Q.: WHAT WAS THE MOST DIFFICULT PART IN CREATING THIS PLAY?
A.: The story comes from the chronicler Saxo Grammaticus, who also wrote about another Danish prince who's featured in a play by some British guy. (Will Shakes-something, I think.) The original legend doesn't give much of a sense of character, though. I based Alwida on the way I remember feeling when I was a kid. She wants to go off and have adventures, but her parents won't let her. Haven't we all felt like that before?
Q.: WHAT DID YOU TRY TO ACHIEVE WITH THIS PLAY?
A.: I just wanted to write something that would keep the audience entertained throughout. With sword fights, silly song, and of course pirates, I certainly hope I succeeded!
Q.: IS THERE ANYTHING ELSE YOU'D LIKE TO ADD?
A.: Arrrgh! Hoist sail, me matey! The fun is just beginning!