I’m Sorry: A Discussion With Katya Lidsky and Lauren Patrice Nadler
by Ari Solomon
If you’re in Los Angeles, there’s a hot ticket in town. The new play, I’m Sorry, written by and starring Katya Lidsky, and directed by Lauren Patrice Nadler, opens on Thursday, January 13 and plays through January 23 at The Lounge Theater in Hollywood.
The show is described as: “funny and poignant, a one-woman play about how a people-pleasing apologist became an animal-loving activist.” Totally intrigued and inspired how Katya used her talents as a springboard to share about her animal activism, I decided to sit down with her and the director, Lauren, during their crazy, hectic tech week and ask them a few questions. I’ll also being seeing the show opening night and talking about it on OHH’s podcast this weekend!
Our Hen House: Katya, it’s not uncommon for actors to become involved in causes they care about. Could you share with us why animals are so close to your heart?
Katya Lidsky: I think artists of any kind are empathetic, and it’s hard not to feel empathy for animals who are by nature voiceless and vulnerable — not to mention cute and furry. I grew up in a border town of Texas and Mexico, and there were many stray, down and out dogs, which always absolutely killed me to see. But about six years ago, I adopted my first dog, a Beagle. […] She has been the gateway to all of this for me, and my greatest muse. I began learning more, volunteering at local animal shelters, and my activism grew from there the more I got involved.
OHH: Katya, what made you decide to use your craft as an actor/writer as a vehicle for sharing how you became an animal activist?
KL: I guess I just felt a burning desire to say these things, to tell this story, to speak to and for the animals I’ve met or loved. I don’t think I ever decided to do this, it’s more like I felt compelled to, I had to. It’s amazing to me how much we don’t know or choose not to know, and a lot of what I have to say is stuff I think we must know in order for change to ensue. I also really like laughing and I hope this show can carry the message while making people laugh and be entertained.
OHH: Lauren, has directing this show had an effect on you with regards to animal issues/activism?
Lauren Patrice Nadler: You bet!! I had no idea about some of the atrocities that take place, and of course I am feeling for sure that I don’t and have never done enough. I love animals and always have, and I seem to attract a lot of rescues, so I am always passing information along. But, I had no idea how far that little gesture could go until I passed on a note to my network about a pregnant pit bull that was in jeopardy. The reaction was astounding. There was a huge outpour of help and it touched me immeasurably. […] That is just one awakening. Working with Katya on this piece I have learned so much. I am determined to get as many people to this play, to try to take it on the road as well as film slices of it and hit millions on the internet. In this show there is at least one personality, animal or event that everyone will identify with, and that identification will wake people up! I am so fortunate to be getting this opportunity to work on this show. I have always wanted to change the planet with my work for as long as I can remember. That is why I became an actor and a teacher, and a director! Plus I am so fortunate to have an angel in my pet, and I can’t imagine my life without her…. more now then ever.
OHH: What are some of the themes you hope the audience walks away with?
KL: I hope the audience walks away empowered, knowing there is so much they can do to make a difference. They can volunteer, adopt when they want a pet, donate to great organizations… I want the audience to know that our dollars count, they are our voting power, and where/how we spend them can help change the world. I just hope people walk away with a raised awareness about what happens to animals in our world today, and how we can be the answer.
LPN: [I hope the audience realizes] that it is never too late to start to help. I can’t say it better than Katya did in her interview here or in the show. Make a difference in any way you can. Every bit counts.
OHH: What do you hope to do with the show after your Los Angeles premiere? Will you be bringing I’m Sorry to other cities?
KL: I hope to do a longer run of the show in Los Angeles, and I would love to take I’m Sorry on the road if I’m invited! It’d be a dream to do this for colleges, in other cities, for animal organizations — just to spread the message and get to do this again would be an amazing goal to achieve. I hope I am that lucky, and I hope people enjoy the show enough to want to see it again and spread the word!
LPN: What she said! Yes, we would like to [take the show on the road] and it is the kind of show that can travel with very little baggage. It would be so great to get the attention that it deserves, and perhaps find an amazing team that wants to help us make that happen.