The Interview Project: Ike Holter

Interview by Will Arbery
April 28, 2020

"I started letting my hair grow the first day of the shutdown lol" —Ike Holter

What fills your days? 

I've been getting up super early and roller-blading through the empty streets. Chicago is VACANT at like 445-630am,
and it's been amazing rediscovering the city though that.
I've also been watching a million movies, reading comics, and eating more edible weed than I ever have in my liiiiiiife.
Me and my partner moved in together, like 6 weeks before this all hit. So on top of the normal process of getting to know how we live together,
we're now figuring out How We Live Together During A Pandemic, on top of everything else, you know, as a treat.
But yeah: I've been writing less, taking in things more, and trying to help other people when I can.

What is your relationship to work during crisis?

I have been taking a bit of a break since 3 months before the virus hit, so this feels like an extension of that.
I'm getting better at setting future projects in motion, which is a skill you train for that is v different than writing itself,
but playwriting right now isn't where my mind is at. The world is changing at a crazy rate and I'm giving it some time. When I do write,
it's for an essay thing or a tv kinda prospect thing.

What or who is inspiring you right now? What or who is beautiful?

I've been listening to so much great music; lots of Anderson Paak and Fiona Apple and Eryn Allen Kane and Eric Roberson.
Also, "Community" just hit Netflix; I watched that show when it was first airing, and being able to check back in with the brilliance has been awesome during all this.

What are you dreaming of making, once we can gather in rooms again?

I wanna do something with a lot of music in it.

What would you say to your younger self — the one without many connections in theater, the one without a Playwrights Horizons commission — if your younger self were confronting or considering a future as an artist during this time of tremendous uncertainty?

I would say that even if theater is your first love, you need to take seriously creating digital art and tv and film. Writers write.


Ike Holter is the recipient of a Doris Duke Charitable Foundation/Andrew Mellon Foundation Commission.