Sally Murphy has studied the Alexander Technique for many years with Jean- Louis Rodrigue. Originally recommended by her singing coach Judith Natalucci, Sally applied the Alexander work to her singing, acting, and dealing with an injury she incurred during a performance of Carousel on Broadway. She has been a member of Steppenwolf since 1993 and is now living in New York City.
Sex with Strangers is about Ethan, a hot young writer whose online journals of “sexcapades” are the buzz of the blogosphere. Olivia is an attractive 30-something whose own writing career never took off. They hook up, sex turns into dating, and dating into something more complicated. A break-out hit at Steppenwolf’s 2009 First Look Repertory, Sex with Strangers explores what happens when our online and offline identities intersect.
Ensemble member Sally Murphy imbues her Olivia with a pervasive sense of ambiguity; she is fragile, she is strong; she is depressed, she is cheery; she is steadfast, she is a sellout. She can’t resist this new young thing (Ethan and/or the internet) even as she is repelled by it. It’s a complex portrayal, especially paired against Grush’s tornadic Ethan, and one that could easily, if unfairly, be dismissed as timid.