Introduce Yourself(ie): 10 Questions with Fade Leading Lady, Annie Dow
January 23rd, 2017
by Annie Dow
Annie Dow makes her off-Broadway debut leading Primary Stages NY premiere production of Tanya Saracho's Fade, a play about Latinos working very different jobs at a ruthless Hollywood studio. Dow stars as Lucia, a woman of Mexican descenet newly hired to write for a TV detective series among a team of domineering white male co-workers. Soon, she begins a burgeoning friendship with Abel, one of the studio’s janitors who inspires more than just workday conversation. BroadwayBox got to know Dow (who is also a writer and a first generation immigrant who came to the United States to attend NYU) as we talked about the importance of the play, her favorite TV shows, and more.
1. I knew I wanted to tell this story because:
I think the general impression of the Latinx community in the American discourse is that we’re somehow all the same, or we’re somehow all one group. But there’s so much diversity in terms of socioeconomic background, language, ethnicity, nationality, and lived experience that I’m consistently disappointed that we’re always painted with such a broad brush. That’s the great thing about this show—we get to bring that diversity and the conversations that go with it to the New York stage in a way that I’m not sure has really been done before! There’s so much that needs to be talked about that pertains to our community, it’s hard to do that if we’re not accurately represented to begin with.
2. The line from Fade I find myself thinking about most outside of the theatre:
At one point my character (who’s a writer) says “I don’t know if I have anything left to say”—that’s like an artist’s biggest fear, isn’t it?! That’s a hard place to put myself in every night, to be honest, and it’s what I’m trying to shake off when I leave the theater.
3. The TV show I am obsessed with right now:
Atlanta, hands down. It’s hilarious, inventive, and just…surreal!
4. The most embarrassing TV show on my DVR:
5. The TV series I can watch over and over and over:
Probably Friends…it taught me all sorts of useful American expressions like “moo point”.
6. My move from Mexico to New York has influenced my art because:
I just live in this bizarre uncanny valley all the time where Mexico and the U.S. feel like home but I still sometimes feel like a foreigner in both. Everything happens in translation regardless of what language I’m speaking, so I’m constantly noticing odd things in both cultures that someone who was monocultural might not—there’s an endless well of comedy and insight in the world when you come at it from that perspective, you know?
7. A typical day off for me includes:
I’d like to say I’m doing something interesting like perfecting my sourdough crumb (gimme credit—I baked a loaf of bread once!) but the truth is I’m probably just sitting around playing video games all day.
8. My happy place in Mexico is:
In Mexico it’s definitely this taco place called Tacos Mode in my hometown that I’ve been going to since I learned to walk—I love those tacos so much I freeze them and bring them with me whenever I come back to the States.
9. My happy place in New York is:
In New York? Anywhere that has a piano.
10. To me, the most personal part of Fade is:
One of the questions I think the play raises is what the difference is between honoring your heritage in your work and trading on it to get ahead. That’s a question I’m sure a lot of artists of color grapple with in this industry, especially when it comes to introducing your subculture to the dominant one.
Don't miss Annie Dow's debut in 'Fade' at off-Broadway's Cherry Lane Theatre through March 5.