Bizzy Coy wants us to laugh at ourselves

  • Comedic writer Bizzy Coy speaks at MacDowell Downtown on Friday. COURTESY PHOTO

Thursday, April 06, 2017 3:6PM

Before finding her voice as a comedic writer, Bizzy Coy designed digital marketing strategies for Broadway productions and poured her energy into a novel that no one wanted to buy. After three years of work it was relegated to a desk drawer and a limbo that might have been unbearable had in not been for Coy’s mom’s insistence that Bizzy just “get something published.”

Convinced it was much easier said than done, Coy wrote a parody of digital marketing and its emphatic takeover of Broadway. She called it “Welcome to Our Broadway Theatre; Please Turn On Your Phones” and sent it to The New Yorker. Thinking it destined for the same limbo as her novel, Coy was surprised and delighted when it was published in June and the editors asked her for more. Since then the magazine has published three additional pieces of hers, and Coy has sold several more to the likes of McSweeney’s as well as other literary magazines.

At MacDowell for her first Fellowship, Coy is finishing revisions of her first play, writing the first draft of a second, and developing a new humor piece based on her stay at The Colony. Smart and pointed, Coy’s sense of humor delights in uncovering the absurdity of conventions and practices familiar to a broad audience. Laughter will be on the menu tomorrow at 7:30 p.m. at the Monadnock Center for History and Culture for this season’s second installment of MacDowell Downtown.

“Writing these satire pieces has become my thing, and I’m liking it very much,” she says without a hint of irony. This Friday she’ll shed light on where she finds inspiration and read a few stories, including an unpublished short piece that’s still one of her favorites. Coy might also offer a peek behind the curtain to preview her play Apocalypse House, which explores “what happens to a reality TV-show family after the show is cancelled in a wave of scandal.”

“I’ve always been a comedy fan,” says Coy, explaining that her affinity for humor can be traced to a short period of time when she was a latchkey kid. “My older brother and I would come home from school and turn on Comedy Central, and watch ‘Kids in the Hall,’ ‘Whose Line Is It, Anyway,’ and ‘SNL.’ Things I’m sure I shouldn’t have been watching at that age.” After earning her B.A. in theatre from S.U.N.Y. Geneseo she migrated to Broadway as a marketer.

“After 10 years of working in theatre, I realized, Oh, you should write a play. And being accepted to MacDowell is the biggest deal for me,” says Coy. “It’s an exciting place to be because I am just getting started and curious to see what happens. It’s a coalescing of my interests in comedy, theatre, and writing – all of it coming together in one art form now.”

Don’t miss the second installment of this season’s MacDowell Downtown. Doors open at the Monadnock Center’s Bass Hall at 7 p.m. with light refreshments and the program begins at 7:30 p.m