Donning a messy blond bob and a shirt reading “Uncool,” Lena Dunham took to the altar of the Central Presbyterian Church in downtown Austin on Sunday evening.
“I haven’t actually been in a church since I was in second grade when my parents left me and my sister with our Irish Catholic nanny for a weekend,” Dunham said.
Dunham was making her latest stop on the tour for her new book, “Not That Kind of Girl: A Young Woman Tells You What She’s ‘Learned.’” Dunham, 28, said Austin is one of her favorite cities in the world to visit.
“Every time something goes wrong in my life, I threaten to move here,” Dunham said.
Best known for her creation of and lead role in HBO’s hit series “Girls,” Dunham had no problem proving her craft: relating to the average young woman in her 20s. As she sat down in front of an audience of approximately 500 people, she cultivated the sort of intimacy that felt as if there were only two people in the room.
Dunham began by reading three excerpts from her book, comprised of a collection of short stories and insight into Dunham’s childhood, career and awkward encounters.
Her stories evoked enough laughter to make the room vibrate, but her personal anecdotes were the best of all — ranging from hilarious to contemplative, often both at once.
Dunham also answered questions about her work on “Girls,” her strong stance on feminism and aspects of her own life.
Her favorite place? “My bed.” Favorite snack? “Bread.” Favorite episode of “Girls” to film? Episode three from season two.
“Honestly, the one where Hannah does all the cocaine,” Dunham said, earning a huge round of applause from the crowd. “The opportunity to pretend to be on blow starting at 6 a.m. for five days was the best thing in the world.”
While fans of the show were treated to a helping of insight, several questions dealt with the issue of inequality in the workplace, as one audience member asked for Dunham’s testimony on life as a young female director in a male-dominated field. Another audience member asked how it felt to be a public figure who has come to represent the voice of young women.
“I want to make sure that, at every stage of my life, I’m telling vital stories about women in my age group,” Dunham said.
If the standing ovation that Dunham received upon answering her last question are any indication, it appears that she is well on her way to achieving that goal.