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Meet the Playwright: Stacey Bell

Moxie's spring season is just around the corner, and this week, we're introducing you to the writers who make it all possible! Meet the second of our playwrights: Stacey Bell, author of Toteon!

(Want to support the work of fantastic artists like Stacey? Donate on our Fractured Atlas, or Venmo us @moxiearts)


The essentials:

Stacey Bell is a US Army veteran, writer and performer originally from Illinois. She has been published in Shark Reef, Mobius, and the anthology Lycan Lore. She received her MA in Medieval Studies in 2015 from California State University, Long Beach and now lives in New York, NY. Toteon is her first full length play.


Read on for our Q&A with Stacey!


Q: Tell us about the writing process for Toteon.

A: I wanted to write a story about women soldiers dealing with the many facets of PTSD. I think it’s been very easy to talk about just one or two aspects without fully embracing the compromises and sacrifices women in arms make on and off the field. Military stories of PTSD tend to focus more on men. I wanted women to get their space. By using what I have learned in medieval studies, I was able to give voice to a woman who has both agency and constrictions in her role as a woman and as a soldier.


Q: What inspires you as an artist? What drives you to work in the theatre?

A: I love bringing untold stories to life, watching things unfold from different angles and viewpoints. Theater makes me want to push the boundaries and find new roles of authenticity.


Q: Who is a woman+ artist you admire, and why?

A: One of the artistic women I have come to admire is Kate Hamill. She has a wonderful, truthful, and unique way to bringing classics such as Sense and Sensibility to the stage.


Q: What is your favorite thing about living in New York City?

A: New York City always finds a way to bring incredible concepts to life.


Q: Why did you want to work with Moxie Arts NY?

A:I really like the idea of Moxie Arts going for subject matters and creative endeavors that others may be afraid to. No fear of rocking the boat. And to be able to do that is get one’s “hands dirty.” There are no such things as clean stories if the story has truth.

Q: Why is Toteon an important piece for right now?

A: We don’t hear a lot about women in the military dealing with PTSD. There seems to be a societal divide on the duties of men and women in uniform. I think my play Toteon touches on the countless ripples of military trauma and the ways gender performance affects how we process it.


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The Moxie team is so excited to be producing a reading of Toteon, and to be working with Stacey! Want to support our work? Donate today!

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