West of 10th Marketing Director, Mikayla Petrilla went behind the scenes to have a conversation with playwright Jessica Moss about Cam Baby, Juilliard, swing-dancing, and more!
Mikayla Petrilla: Where is your hometown and where do you currently reside?
Jessica Moss: I'm from Toronto, Canada, but I'm living in New York right now.
MP: Where did you pursue an education/what did you major in?
JM: I'm going into my third year of the playwriting program at Juilliard. Prior to that, I did undergrad at University of King's College in Halifax and the University of Toronto, where I finished with a major in English and minors in Drama and History. Then I did the acting program at the National Theatre School of Canada.
MP: Cam Baby: what are the origins of the play? How did this come about? Did you have any influences?
JM: I like when people do impressions of things they've seen, or try an re-enact something, either from real life or from something the've watched: I find it truly magical and theatrical and deeply entertaining. So I started writing a scene of a girl trying to describe a YouTube video to a guy. I also love watching people watch things, so it kind of blossomed into a play about privacy and people watching from that.
A little over a year ago, the Brock Turner rape case and the Jian Ghomeshi case were getting a lot of attention, and my outrageous anger and fear about both of those cases really focused the play.
MP: Describe Cam Baby
JM: It's a fast paced ensemble comedy about privacy, identity, and the value of women.
MP: Tell us more about you! Are you involved at any theatres, have an exciting day job, have a pet, etc. We want to know about your career and interests:
JM: I do improv and like writing musical theatre song lyrics! I work for a theatre non-profit called The Lilly Awards, which advocates for gender parity. My life is pretty theatre-centric....I used to love baking but then I moved to New York and my kitchen is so awful. I'm actively looking for a non-theatre hobby right now. Maybe I'll get back into swing-dancing, which I was pretty serious about once upon a time.
MP: Do you have any other projects up your sleeve?
JM: I'm working on a few plays and musicals.
MP: What's it like working with West of 10th?
JM: I'm very grateful to them for the opportunity to share my work