• Broadway Beat

"Stop Asking Me What My Job Is!" says Local Dramaturg Who Isn't Really Sure Either

by Isabella Basile. @isabellashutup.

MADISON, CT. - Local dramaturg Sabrina Burton recently voiced her frustration with family and friends frequently asking her to describe her job, mostly because of her inability to do so herself.


"No one seems to understand the important work we do as dramaturgs," Burton explained while obviously googling "what is dramaturgy, simple definitions only". "It's exhausting! We deserve the same respect as every other profession you don't understand."


Burton's irritation reached its peak after her recent appointment as dramaturg for a local production of Anne Washburn's Mr. Burns was not met with the response she expected. Mona Harrington, Sabrina's lifelong friend, received the news via a phone call that quickly turned into a lecture.


"Yeah, I asked her about her job, and she when on for like 20 minutes about 'the world of the play' and 'I'm a literary consultant there to guide the artistic vision'," stated Harrington, who has asked Burton this same question before on 11 separate occasions. "But when I asked her what that meant, she blocked my number."


Sabrina's father, Jim, seemed less concerned about the logistics.


“We're proud of Sabrina no matter what," he said while using a draft of his daughter's program note as kindling."I'm just so gobsmacked she got a job in her field, I can't even bring myself to question it."


Burton then proudly presented us her show binder, which contained a fully-highlighted copy of EF's Visit to a Small Planet, a photo of Gotthold Ephraim Lessing with little hearts drawn around it, and a to-do list stating "research packet" followed by "why this play now?" 15 times.


When asked one final time if she could define the role of the dramaturg, Ms. Burton only had this to say:


"At the end of the day, we don't become dramaturgs for fame or for recognition, or even for people to know what we're doing. We do it so we can feel superior to everyone else."