Title: Writer/Performer, currently appearing in I Look Like An Egg, But I Identify as a Cookie an interactive baking comedy
Hometown: Niagara-on-the-Lake (Canada) now San Francisco
1. How did you come up with the idea of baking onstage?
I had done stand-up for a long time and I was trying to figure out what to do with my hands for 90 minutes. I always found it comforting to bake. It's relaxing and helps me get into the creative flow. Then it kept growing. Somewhere along the line I realized I could structure the stories with the recipe.
2. Where do the cookies served at the end of you show come from?
I bake all of them fresh the day of the show. For the integrity of the show I think it would be wrong not to. It's very soothing and I rehearse the show that way. I would prefer to bake them all live. My original vision was to have 20 easy bake ovens, but you can only make so much with a light bulb! I almost did the show in a place that sells appliances with a wall of ovens.
3. What were meals like for you growing up?
The Friday night Shabbat salon dinners had a transformative effect on my life. Eating a meal once a week with 16 people is what helped keep our family together. It was the highlight of my life growing up. I made little shows for my family with my cousins. It's the time when we were together, and sharing. My work is about sharing and connecting. I think food connects us. It's a basic thing. It's what I try to do in the show.
4. What are your favorite bakeries?
I love a good boulangerie or patisserie. I love the apricot danish at Nabolom Bakery in the East Bay. I used to go to the patisserie on California at Fillmore. I love the s'more thing at Citizen Cake.
5. What are the big differences between Canadians and Northern Californians?
There are a million Canadians living in Northern California, making it the third or fourth largest Canadian city. Canada is less urban. It's super-expressive here. In Canada there is no first amendment. Canada is more culturally conservative, I mean in demeanor and temperament. Canadians don't seem like crazy liberals the way people here do. No one wants to stick out. But there are a lot of similarities. Maybe fleece is the thing that holds the two places together?
Note: This run of "Cookie" at the Hotel Rex closes in April. There are two more shows left with Lewis Rossman of Cetrella as guest baker next Sunday and George Morrone (Tartare, Aqua, Fifth Floor) on Monday. Visit Subvert for ticket information.