Bethesda, which played at the Capital
fringe festival this past summer, is “a
dark comedy about a disgraced diplomat who returns to Bethesda to salvage
his career and his family,” says eng.
“[i knew from] growing up here, there is
a currency that exists here that doesn’t
exist everywhere. money and power are
everywhere, but in Bethesda, it’s a little
different. i wanted to write a commentary on status, and about what is lost in
a family when status is the focus.”
Novel: The Stager
Coll tells the story of the Jorgenson
family—Bella, an investment banker;
Lars, a former tennis star; and their precocious, 10-year-old daughter, elsa—and
what happens when eve Brenner, a former journalist, “stages” their Bethesda
home in order to help it sell.
“i’m often portrayed as skewering
Bethesda, but i look at it as an idyllic
community, almost perfect. What everyone aspires to in a good way. [Bethesda
has] people with good values who are
trying to live a platonic, reasoned life. …i
write about what happens next.”
Record Album: Thank You Bethesda
Thank You Bethesda is the title track
of an album released in april 2013 by
huxley, a singer/songwriter and musi-
cian. the song, says huxley, is about an
“adventure i had with a friend in college
who was from Bethesda,” and “is loosely
about seeing the world in a new way.”
“the name has taken on a second
meaning since i moved here in 2005
from L.a., which is pretty much the
antithesis of Bethesda. i had to figure
out how to make it work, creatively.
my wife is originally from here, and we
thought it would be a great place to
raise kids, which it is.”
Novel: Man Alive!
dr. owen Lerner is a pediatric psycho-pharmacologist from Bethesda who
gets struck by lightning on the last
night of his family’s summer vacation
in rehoboth Beach, del. While recovering from his injuries, Lerner experiences
many of the symptoms he’s seen in his
young patients, including attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and post-trau-matic stress disorder.
“Bethesda is a family suburb, which
started out as a quieter, easygoing place,
but it’s turned into the place of high-achieving, highly educated, competitive
folks. seemed like a great place to set
the question of nature vs. nurture that
i wanted to explore: how much do you
celebrate when someone strays from
‘normal’ and how much do you try and
fix it? and what is normal?”
WHO WORK WHY BETHESDA
Jennie Berman eng
39, of vienna, va.
54, of northwest d.C.
58, of Bethesda
mary Kay Zuravleff
54, of northwest d.C.
Bethesda has topped lists of the most educated places and top-earning towns in the country
and been listed as one of the nation’s most livable cities, but a reputation for influencing the
arts? Hardly. That may be changing. In recent years, a playwright, a couple of authors and even
a rock musician have drawn inspiration from the Bethesda lifestyle.
a BETHESDA state of mind