When I was eight, I started my own version of a Nancy Drew: Girl Detective novel. Even then it seems I was interested in the complexities of human behavior which I continue to explore now as an actor, a writer, and in my ‘day job’ as a psychiatrist.
I was a pianist and studied acting before I went to medical school. I came to NYC and did my residency in psychiatry. My work in the field has been gratifying – and also a great background and source of material for my theatrical work. In recent years I’ve written two one person plays for myself – both tell the stories of women in very precarious situations due to emotional problems.
The first play I wrote and starred in is the story of a woman on Death Row in Oklahoma. My director Austin Pendleton and I took THE SPEED QUEEN (adapted from Stewart O’Nan’s novel) to the Midtown International Theater Festival (winner Outstanding Performance in a Solo Show), New Jersey Rep, Pittsburgh’s Off the Wall Productions, and even “up the river” to inmate audiences at Sing Sing prison and Bedford Hills Correctional facility!
My second one person play – and second collaboration with Austin Pendleton – was directly inspired by the role play work I do with the NYC Police Department. In these training sessions, I play emotionally disturbed characters against which officers hone their negotiation skills. The resulting play – I WON’T BE IN ON MONDAY – is the story of a receptionist struggling with bipolar disorder and has been played to acclaim at Off the Wall Productions, Urban Stages and the United Solo Festival in New York City.
Over the years, as an actor, I have studied with outstanding teachers (Bill Esper, Austin Pendleton, Ron Van Lieu, Karen Kohlhaas, and on camera with Heidi Marshall).
I am a member of SAG-AFTRA and AEA, and I have done commercials, showcases, and student films.
In my spare time, between working out and then tracking down the latest version of ‘diet’ ice cream, I play with as many friends’ dogs as I can find – none of whom thankfully require my psychiatric services!