Writer and director, Philip Rademeyer, and actor Lesoko Seabe from Rust Co-Operative talk to Paul levy about Siembamba, a play that “looks at how the domestic worker simultaneously is and is not part of the family, and also asks questions about the social and political complexities of this intimate relationship in the 1980s and 1990s.” Part of the Best of South Africa season at the Fringe, Philip discusses the process of co-authoring with Penelope Youngleson and Lesoko discusses how she brings truth to the characters she plays.
Nicholas Quirke, from Droll and Folly Theatre, has brought The Tempest indoors! Known in Brighton for his award-winning outdoor productions, director Nicholas talks about the challenges and delights of having “proper lighting” and the opportunity to create a storm at the Emporium Theatre (now known as 88 London Road).
Paul Levy talks to writer, director, and designer of The Albatross 3rd and Main, Simon David Eden, which plays during February 2016 at Emporium Brighton. A fascinating insight into the process of discovering an idea which then becomes a powerful piece of theatre.
“It’s cabaret, it’s burlesque… welcome to Cabalesque. Do you dare to step inside?” Paul Levy talks to producer and director, Roman Withers, and writer, performer and assistant director, Rosanna Bini about Cabalesque – Tales of the City which begins its journey with one performance at Emporium Brighton, with further performance lined up for 2016. The piece comes from Normal People Productions and the show benefited from artistic advice from Archie Caine.
Chloe heads up an all women team of PR specialists focussing on visual arts, theatre and opera. In 2015 they represented nine solo shows in their portfolio of 20 at Edinburgh. She talks about why solo shows are special and how you can make the best decisions for your show in terms of PR support.
“In every story of things that go bump in the night, there are two possibilities. One, that it’s a hoax. Two, that there is something going on beyond the grasp of the human mind”.
And so begins Black Channels’ radiophonic exploration in to the poltergeist phenomenon that forms part of this evenings immersive entertainment, alongside a talk on the folklore of death and water by James Burt, ghost stories and archive video footage, all hosted by paranormal enthusiast, Curtis James.
Real life reports of paranormal activity, otherworldly vibrations and oscillations, chilling accounts of nocturnal visitations and strange activity in the most mundane of suburban surroundings will echo around the 19th Century stone walls of Saint Andrews Church, Brighton. There are tales of hauntings in the venue itself (no longer used for worship), and it is certainly true that the burial vaults beneath the pews have yet to be removed.
Doors open at 7:30pm on 23rd August 2015. Performance starts at 8. There will be no admittance after 8.
This event is part of a series called Miniclick contacts the spirit side. It is produced in collaboration with Miniclick.
Milla Jackson is an experienced producer, director and freelance PR. She has been representing shows at Edinburgh for three years – mostly comedy but in 2015 took on her first solo theatre show. She explores why you should consider employing a professional PR for your show, how they can help you and your show and how to choose. Above all she emphasises getting your PR in place EARLY!
Leonie Webb is a producer with experience of three shows, over two years at Edinburgh. This year (2015) she produced her first solo show To She or Not to She at Pleasance Courtyard. She talks about the differences and challenges in taking a solo show together with lots of practical advice about planning, choosing your venue, publicity and surviving when you are only a very small team.
Phil Aughey discusses his experiences of bringing a solo show to Edinburgh from Australia. His show ‘Chopin’s Last Tour’ ran for the full month at Zoo Southside.
It is 1848. Chopin is in Scotland. There’s a revolution in France. His father has died. His relationship with George Sand is over. His health is failing rapidly. A show about Chopin’s feelings, lifeand music, with live piano.
Daniel shares some of his thoughts and experiences (and suggestions) of bringing solo shows to a number of different venues over ten years. Lots of useful tips for anyone thinking of following in his footsteps.
Hannah discusses how she came to create the show Dylan Thomas – the Man, the Myth with Fringe legend, Guy Masterson. The show celebrates the life and work of Wales’ most revered writer. Hannah journeys to the heart of her genius grandfather’s story with performances of his poems, stories and letters by Guy.
Shelley Mitchell shares her experiences of bringing a solo show to Edinburgh for the first time.
Her show, ‘Talking with Angels Budapest 1943’ is a true story about four close-knit artists who, notwithstanding the upheaval of war, made detailed notes of their conversations with other worldly entities. Gitta Mallasz, the sole survivor of the group, saved the transcripts they made and in 1976 published them as ‘Dialogues avec l’ange’
Solo performer Gemskii discusses not only the contribution that Joan Littlewood made to British theatre but the challenge of reworking a show intended for a cast of six to being a solo piece.
“Joan Littlewood contributed as much to British theatre as Shakespeare! Why is she not remembered? Is it because she was a communist, or a woman, or because she was downright rude? Joan, Babs & Shelagh too is a complete history of this fantastic woman and her collision with Barbara Windsor and Shelagh Delaney.”
Emma Bentley discusses her decision to write a ‘solo Shakespeare feminist play’ and some of the issues that newly trained young women actors face in 2015.
“’Frailty thy name is woman?! Oh get stuffed Will!’ Armed with her record player, a fake moustache, some rudimentary feminism and a lot of questions, Emma sets out to find out exactly why she can’t play Hamlet. Or Macbeth. Or Iago. Or even just a downright Fool. And not just on stage but in real life! Emma Bentley dons the trousers in her debut solo show tackling the trials and tribulations of playing Shakespeare’s men … without a codpiece.”
Matt Woodhead and Helen Monks of FYSA Theatre, co-creators of the verbatim piece E15, talk about the process of creating the show which examines the Focus E15 movement (started when 29 young mothers united to confront Newham Council’s gentrification of their hometown), Britain’s housing crisis and how one group of women refused to be marginalised. As well as sharing their passion for creating theatre with a political agenda they also look at some of the challenges in creating verbatim work such as developing an ethical framework to underpin the work, involving all sides of the story, and making good theatre as well as good documentary.
The name Stellar Quines is a combination of two old Scots words: ‘stellar’ meaning ‘starry’ and ‘quines’ meaning ‘women’. Stellar Quines celebrates the energy, experience and perspective of women. They provide a platform for women’s stories and create live theatre driven by women and where female practitioners are at the forefront of all creative roles – the only professional theatre company in Scotland working in this way. Work that is defined by high quality, diverse work which reflects an eclectic range of theatrical styles and is underpinned by a commitment to pushing boundaries and challenging stereotypes. We discussed the current production at the fringe – the Jennifer Tremblay Triology, especially The List, as well as the ways that Stellar Quines encourages and champions new writing.
Paul Levy talks to comedy performers, Roisin O’Mahony and Chiara Goldsmith about Wild at Heart. “Unpredictable comedy theatre from debut duo Róisín and Chiara. Get personal with their creations in a highly improvisational 45 minutes of ‘comedic genius’ and unexpected tenderness. Meet roller-blading couriers, ex-pat rockers, T4 presenters and lifestyle gurus as they collide and connect in a tapestry of physical storytelling and character creation.”
Paul Levy talks to Peter Michael Marino about Late with Lance! How do you create a new character? Where is the line between character comedy and theatre? “From the creator of the global smash Desperately Seeking the Exit comes Lance – a delusionally optimistic cruise ship entertainer. This pathological musical theatre fanatic and celebrity stalker is docked in town, so he’s hosting his own twisted, musical variety chat show. Featuring Lance’s original songs, clever dances, and witty rapport with his special scheduled guests Liza Minnelli, Hugh Jackman and Miami Sound Machine. Lance has suffered for his art. Now it’s your turn.”
Paul Levy talks to Daniel Cainer about Daniel Cainer: 21st Century Jew. “Brand new stories-in-song from this award-winning master songwriter. Fringe favourite Cainer explores the challenges and contradictions of being Jewish in 21st century Britain. A show for anyone who has ever wrestled with their heritage, their history, their home and their heart… Jewish or not.”
Kate Saffin talks to Canadian playwright, Ciaran Myers about his new one woman play, Touch. He talks about the background to developing the idea and his choices in the form of the play.
Jacky tells her story while struggling with her addictive need to harm herself, both inspired by and comforted by the audience. Through the zenith of her struggles, she comforts the audience in return.
Kate Saffin talks to Kate Lennon, producer, with Funny Women about her background as a stand up comic and the ways that Funny Women support women to ‘Write, perform and do business with humour’. Funny Women was founded by Lynne Parker in 2002 to help women find their voice through performing, writing and using humour in business and everyday life. They run comedy workshops, weekend events and conferences in London, Manchester, Brighton and Edinburgh on stand up, comedy writing, improvisation, sketch and character, and ‘Time of the Month’ a scratch night to try out new comedy ideas.
Kate Saffin talks to Robert Peacock from TV Bomb about Death on the Fringe. Death on the Fringe is an initiative started by the local Palliative Care Partnership last year, a festival within the festival. The partnership has a year round campiagn ‘Good Life, Good Death, Good Grief’ which aims to to make people aware of ways to live with death, dying and bereavement and help them feel better equipped to support each other through those difficult times. They approached Robert Peacock of TV Bomb for some help to put together a programme highlighting shows and events at the Fringe which focus on death. Which sounds rather morbid…
Only it isn’t . The shows span comedy, drama and dance with, for the first time this year, a series of more talks by healthcare specialists. The result is a very broad look at the end of life and all its implications – for the dying person and their family and friends.
Paul Levy talks to actor Cassandra Hodges about the Big Bite Size Breakfast Show. “Three rotating selections of ‘bite-size’ comedies, eccentricity, mini drama – with free coffee, croissant and strawberries. Great writers from the UK/around the world – funny, eccentric, thought-provoking (www.bite-size.org). Award-winning company (Latest award Best Theatre Performance, Argus Festival Angel). This hugely popular show features a variety of styles for a stimulating good morning experience each day!”.Bite Size also bring a new show at lunch time show to the Fringe called the Big Bite-Size Lunch Hour: Lunch in Cairo. “Ukimwi: an American oil worker meets a young prostitute in a Cairo bar in an exploration of some of Africa’s challenges with HIV. Veils: a charming and powerful play about a veiled African-American student and the controversial practice of wearing veils… or not. ”
Paul Levy talks to Paul Lucas about Fringe First winning verbatim theatre production, Trans Scripts. “The struggles and triumphs of six transgender women unfold with honesty, intelligence and wit in this groundbreaking exploration of gender and identity by Fringe First and Herald Angel Award-winning producer Paul Lucas. Created from actual interviews, Trans Scripts provides a rare and intimate glimpse into the lives of people embracing their authentic selves, and offers testament to the resilience of the human spirit. A powerhouse international cast from Broadway, television and film includes Calpernia Addams (Beautiful Daughters), Bianca Leigh (Transamerica) and Rebecca Root (BBC2’s Boy Meets Girl). Directed by two-time Fringe First Award winner Linda Ames Key.”
Paul Levy talks to Zoe Hakin and Chris Foley about Mixtape. “Join the Mixtapers for their hilarious bitesized theatre inspired by music. Part comedy show and part music quiz. The Mixtapers perform from themes including Number Ones, The 80s, Brit Pop, Girl Bands vs Boy Bands and Rock’n’Roll. The rules? The sketches will only use remixed words from the song’s lyrics and can be no longer than the tracks that inspired them! Guess what songs inspired the short sketches to be in with the chance of winning tonight’s highly coveted Golden Mixtape.”
Paul Levy talks to Carol Caffrey about Music for Dogs, Music for Dogs is “written by Ireland Professor of Poetry, Paula Meehan, Music for Dogs is a story of survival, set during Ireland’s Celtic Tiger years, and takes place on Dublin’s Burrow beach. By turns funny and poignant, it tells the story of Jane MacDonald and how she made the fortune she is leaving to her estranged brother and sister. Though the context of Janey Mac’s story is a dark one, her essential humanity and joy in life shine through. “
Paul Levy talks to the Greenside Team about creating a new fringe venue. Darren, Callum and Sophie are just three of the many people that bring Greenside to the Fringe each year. Now three venues, life began on Royal Terrace. Infirmary Street is the latest addition to the Greenside family. How do you turn a community centre into a vibrant theatre venue and social space for fringe goers? The venue creator, technical wizard and bar maker all shared their thoughts.
Paul Levy talks to Gina Jenkinson about Desperately Seeking Attention. “I’d like to prove to you that growing up being ignored and disliked by both of my parents has not affected me in any way. Come and see how I’m totally secure. Please? I’ll hurt myself if you don’t.” We hear about how the show was born and how it is developing during its Fringe run. First time solo shows can be frightening and thrilling.
Paul Levy talks to Franks and Skinner about Franks and Skinner Present: Myself and Myself. How did this acclaimed comedy duo come into being? “Franks and Skinner dance, sing and improvise in their latest comic adventure. With over 20 characters, fast-paced comedy and classic 90s tunes, this show will tickle you in more ways than one (subject to guarantee). Myself and Myself is a surreal take on friendship, fertilisation and funkiness. Franks and Skinner create odd, dark humour from everyday events, and pick up on the quirks and idiosyncrasies of human nature. There are wigs, sequin jackets, a saxophone and the odd bike helmet!”
Paul Levy talks to Tom Penn about The Frantic Canticles of Little Brother Fish, Babolin Theatre‘s winner of an Outstanding Theatre Award from Fringe Review. How does Babolin make its unique work? “Babolin welcome you to their monastery in deepest Depravia, where choristers chant and goose quills frantically scratch out the chronicle of an ancient quest.”
Kate Saffin talks to Lanna Joffrey about Handan Productions’Valiant, a “powerful documentary and theatrical performance chronicling the role of women in war. From victim to perpetrator to peacemaker, and from Afghanistan to Japan. Meet thirteen women who have fought, struggled and survived in a century of conflict. Adapted for the stage by Lanna Joffrey from the book of verbatim interviews Valiant Women in War and Exile, by Sally Hayton-Keeva, this new piece of writing explores the perspective of these thirteen women and how war has shaped their lives. Most of us know the history of war as men see it; in Valiant, women have their say.”
Paul Levy talks to Marcello Liverani and Luca Wu about Luca Wu and Reverse Context Live. “Two artists, two different styles in a unique exciting rock show. Luca Wu is an eclectic singer/songwriter, pianist and composer with a captivating pop/rock sound and international footprint: Luca was born in Italy, lives in London and holds a strong bond with China. Reverse Context is a composer, singer/songwriter active in the avant-garde art in the international arena, performing in festivals such as the Venice Biennale. He leads influences of experimental electronic music into alternative rock. A kaleidoscopic concert that combines sound, lighting and video for an amazing experience that will surprise you!”
Paul Levy talks to Ben Fairey about Ben Fairey: Floe Joe’s Faces. “Armed with just his bedroom-made beats and a very literal multiple personality disorder, Iowa’s dopiest music producer Floe-Joe invites you to indulge in his wacky world of sketch, funk and self-centred banter! An intimate listening party of deep-soul music with all the fancy spiel to go with it. Luckily, the spiel is told via a playlist of character comedy sketches by faces that share the brain of music producer Floe-Joe!”
Paul Levy talks to Jules Munns and Heather Urquhart about how they improvise and why they loved it, and their new show Ten Thousand Million Love Stories which plays at the Freestival, Thistle St James, 17.50 until August 20th.
Kate Saffin talks to devised theatre piece writer Catrina McHugh from Open Clasp, about Key Change. “The prison van, fences high, a magpie. ‘One for sorrow. Snatched the babies. The mother fought, but it was too big and flew too high.’ Devised by women from HMPYOI Low Newton and originally toured to male prisons, Key Change is a raw and illuminating portrayal of women in prison, using only a few chairs, a ghetto blaster and four rolls of masking tape.”
Kate Saffin talks to Jack Revell and Nikki Hill from Nottingham New Theatre about Open and Cheque Please. “Cheque Please follows Ivy, a waitress, who offers the audience a chance to experience a couple of weeks inside her head. Dealing with her depression and on a spiral of self evaluation, she is forced to decide, with the aid of the audience, if she too wants to collect the cheque on her life and commit suicide.” Open is ” devised theatre peering through the cracks in modern Britain.”
Paul Levy talks to Lorna Shaw and Kat Bond about That Pair: Letting it Go. “Combining real life stories, sketches and songs, the critically acclaimed duo return with a cautionary tale of two kids’ party entertainers battling to convince the world they are real princesses.” How do you find the right balance between doing what you love and need to do, and paying the rent?
Donald Stewart talks to Matthew McVey about Rabbie, a new musical by Edinburgh playwright, Andrew Dallmeyer. Rabbie, is a rich and colourful musical drama depicting the life of Scotland’s bard, Robert Burns.
Paul Levy talks to some of the the team behind The Glorious Damnation of Eddie Small. Stanton Wright plays the Devil, Lizzie Bourne, (also the writer,) plays the manager, and Roxy Cook is the director. How did Zut Alors Theatre create and develop this unique bluegrass musical?
Troublesome People by Jill Haas was a big hit at the Brighton Fringe and an award-winner to boot. In this interview, Paul Levy talks to performer, Rowan Scarborough , who plays Leni in the production, and director Frank Simms from Ashrow Theatre, about how the play has developed in the run up to, and during the Edinburgh Fringe. “Troublesome People examines the Second World War through the eyes of conscientious objectors, Jewish refugees and arable farmers all working on the Isle of Man. With a cast of seven, this play explores the courage and bravery required by everyone during WWII and helps highlight the plight of these individuals surviving on the periphery of a global war, whether by choice or circumstance. Jill Haas is a prize-winning American author now resident in the UK.”
Paul Levy talks to Chris Cooke about Chris Cooke’s Free Speech. “ThreeWeeks‘ co-editor Chris Cooke always saw free speech as a fundamental right, but then started arguing that Robin Thicke’s Blurred Lines should be banned. So what is free speech exactly? And is it ever right to censor? In this free speech, Chris will explore what the law actually says about freedom of expression and consider the tricky balancing act between free speech and causing offence. And then explain why Robin Thicke’s Blurred Lines should have indeed been banned.”
Paul Levy talks to Annalea Doyle and Rebecca Darmody about surreal comedy Totes Inappropes!“Three actresses are set to premier their play about Tinder. When one of them doesn’t turn up, the remaining two must continue on with the play whilst trying to find a replacement on Tinder. Throughout the course of the play they will reveal their own personal experiences with the weird and wonderful characters on Tinder. It is Waiting for Godot, with more Tinder. Come along and give them a right swipe.”
Paul Levy talks to Alice Motta and Andrea Spisto about What Would You Do. The show is part of The Freestival. Wild Dandelions are exploring fear at the Fringe. Here they talk about their style of physical theatre and how the show was created. “What would you do if you weren’t afraid? Bungee naked? Move to China? We asked the public this simple yet revealing question during EdFringe 2014 and continued, gathering stories from across the globe. Using characters, playfulness, poetry and clowning, we explore and bring colours to the humanity of fear.”
Nicholas Collett talks to Joanna Hawkins about Mental Health Shows at the Fringe. There are more shows at the Fringe than ever exploring physical and mental health. For example, in The Sick of the Fringe: “Commissioned by the Wellcome Trust and conceived by Brian Lobel, the Sick of the Fringe is a curated programme of events aiming to inspire collaboration between science and the arts. The Sick of the Fringe features keynote talks from leading voices in arts, medicine and activism, open dialogues, advice sessions and opportunities for emerging artists and more.” Here, promoter, Joanna Hawkins unravels the story. with a particular focus on comedy.
Paul spokw to: Ruth Tweedy (Dromio in Comedy of Errors and Lady Macbeth in Macbeth), Callum Forman (Antipholus in Comedy of Errors and Macduff in Macbeth) and Esme Biggar (Adriana in Comedy of Errors and Malcolm in Macbeth).
Kate Saffin talks to Craig Jordan-Baker and Tom Dussek about The Tale of Tommy O’Quire. “Tommy hates his life of poverty and grime. Then he hears about a treasure map, and he’ll do whatever it takes to get his hands on it, even if that means murder! Map in hand, he sets off on his quest, meeting hungry wolves, unusual monsters, and terrifying ghosts along the way. But if he returns, what will his friends think of him? Inspired by traditional storytelling and fable, this is a live picture-book told in verse to delight everyone from age 7 to 107. Part of the Sea of Stories season at Sweet Venues.”
Paul Levy talks to Lizabeth Sipes about her play, Bug Bite. “What do you do when you move your family from the burbs to the city to begin a new adventure and then get diagnosed with stage four-breast cancer? You go on a mission to put everything in place before possibly saying goodbye. Agonisingly brave, touchingly funny, beautifully poignant and brutally honest, Bug Bite is the true story of one woman’s mission to save her family and herself, the people she meets along the way, and the discovery that the first step on the road to healing is acceptance.” How was the work created and what was its journey to the Edinburgh Fringe?
Judith Amsenga and Jules Munns talk about The Nursery, the dedicated performance space for improvised theatre, comedy and cabaret at the Edinburgh Fringe. You could spend a whole day at the Thistle Hotel with shows likethese.
Crusoe is back at the Fringe after a highly recommended review from FringeReview for Gavin Robertson‘s solo work two years ago. “Robertson returns after last year’s solo hit, Bond! Following performances in the USA, Europe and Australia, this unique, darkly comic show creates an urban cinematic world where a hitman, a middle-aged white male and an Alzheimer’s sufferer share their stories, thoughts and mishaps about being alone, cunningly interwoven with an exploration of Big Bang theory! A tight blend of precise movement and bold images, supported by an original atmospheric soundtrack.” In this interview, he talks about the importance of solo theatre in his work, how he makes it, and how he deals with the “solo” aspect. A fascinating insight into theatre craft.
Paul Levy talks to Ross Drury about Reunion. “George and Jude seem like your typical elderly couple, gardening and bickering through their winter years. But as they nervously wait for their daughter and granddaughter to arrive, they’re forced to confront the violence and tragedy of their youth. Reunion is a bittersweet exploration into the power of memory, the lies that bind, and how far we’ll go to justify our past.” Living Record Theatre make living theatre, and the audience are very much part of that process. Director, Ross Drury tells the story of how Reunion was made, a unique process of Fringe theatre-making.
Paul Levy talks to Lucy Danser about Stand Up and Slam! – a free show that pits poets against stand-ups. “Stand-up comedy: poetry’s idiot relation, right? Performance poetry: comedy’s boring cousin, yes? Let’s find out. Six phenomenal acts go head to head for your approval as poetry and comedy collide with unexpected and hilarious results! Each night our resident team captains are joined by the most exciting acts the festival has to offer. We’re mashing up the two art forms in an epic battle of spoken word. Who wins? You decide.” Lucy talks about the show and also about comedy at the Fringe.
Kate Saffin talks to Laura Ingram from Orange Girl Productions about Nell Gwyn: An Epilogue. ‘The darling strumpet of the crowd,’ nineteen-year old Nell is at the height of her career, celebrated for her comic acting – particularly when she dresses as a boy to show her legs. She has caught the eye – and the attentions – of the King, but Charles Hart, her manager and former lover, is frustrating her ambitions both on and off the stage. Aided by the audience, Nell concocts a plan to win Hart round, but will the King still want her when she does?”
Kate Saffin talks to Steven Hay about Turning Leaves from Rust and Starburst. “Crime and the treatment of criminals ought to be black and white. One rule for everyone. But is justice free from the assumptions of gender and class ever really possible? Turning Leaves brings together three stark, powerful solo performances to discuss social perception and analysis of crime and risk. Trees Grow High, written and directed by Eleanor Conlon and performed by Jessica Blake. Oh Danny Boy, written by Jaime Woodham, directed by John Retallack and performed by Steve Hay. Turning Leaves, written and directed by Eleanor Conlon.”
Kate Saffin catches up with actor and writer, Josh Gardner, who brings his second show to the Fringe, The Free Meditation Class. “A new one-man show from performance maker Josh Gardner. Following his first sell-out success at the Edinburgh Fringe with It’s All About George (‘Highly recommended’, FringeReview.co.uk, ‘Enthralling’Scotsman) Josh turns his attention to contemporary spiritual trends in a show that considers how they may, or may not, contribute to narcissism and political apathy in the Western world.”
Seamus Moran, actor and writer, talks about a very unique play from Ireland, Have a Heart. Seamus explores, with Paul Levy, the process of creating new writing which, sometimes, can take years and, when we leave things for a while, we can return to them at the right time.
Paul Levy attempts to unravel the mystery of Mata Hari: Female Spy with actor, Katharine Hurst. How does one play this iconic figure? The actor unravels the process, which is like creating a jigsaw. Director, Gavin Robertson, assumes the best in his audience; that they are attentive and will put in the effort required to put the pieces together. The result, is a greater whole, and always highly engaging theatre.
Guest interviewer, Katharine Hurst (Mata Hari: Female Spy), talks to actors Simon Nader and Karl Mercer about As Is. “New York, 1985. Rich, a young writer who is beginning to find success, is breaking up with Saul, his long-time lover. However, Rich’s idyll with his new lover is short-lived when he is diagnosed with AIDS, and turns back to Saul for sanctuary. Ground-breaking when it premiered, in its 30th anniversary year, As Is remains an honest, unsparing and sharply funny examination of sexuality, death, and what it means to love someone as is.”
This is not the play of the film. This is the play. Paul Levy talks to Greg Esplin from In Your Face Theatre about bringing Trainspotting to the Edinburgh Fringe, sharing the rehearsal process and how a powerful musical score was woven into the piece. ‘I was shocked, and I wrote the f*cking thing!’ said Irvine Welsh. at the sell-out London run.
Paul Levy talks to Hannah Ellis and Guy Masterson about Dylan Thomas The Man, The Myth. This is Hannah Ellis being herself, not playing herself. Though not an actor, the granddaughter of Dylan Thomas is learning to be an effective part of a theatre two-hander. Her partner on stage, is Guy Masterson in, Dylan Thomas – The Man, The Myth, which “celebrates the life and work of Wales’ most revered writer, Hannah Ellis journeys to the heart of her genius grandfather’s story featuring rare images, his poems, stories and letters”.
Paul Levy has a flash-mob, thoroughly enjoyable chat with cabaret and comedy performer Andrew Strano about Nailed It. “Nailed It! is about when you are (or really aren’t) … nailing it. Featuring the Green Room Award-winning original songs of Loclan Mackenzie-Spencer (Associate Musical Director, Wicked) and Andrew Strano (nominated: Best Male Cabaret Performer, TheatrePeople.com.au) and a very sparkly jacket. Directed by Casey Gould.”
Boblaong isn’t an easy show to categorise. It’s certainly comedy, and children certainly love it. And that’s just how writer and performer, Tom Fraser (co-founder of the Bobalong Club) likes it. Paul Levy chatted to Tom and to stage manager, Ioana Gaskell about “a brand new children’s show brought to you by two Cambridge Footlights.”
Paul Levy talks to Heather Bagnall and Luke Tudball about Ferdinand, a family-friendly show that explores the issue of bullying. Inspired by the classic children’s book The Story of Ferdinand, the show is described as “a heart-warming yet hard-hitting original drama about family, conflict, loss and growing up.” Writer and director, Heather, and performer, Luke, from Tasty Monster Productions, discuss how the work was created and brought successfully to the stage.
Is Juliette Burton, actress, writer and performer, still unravelling. she is back at the fringe with Look at Me, having developed the piece. Juliette chats about making comedy theatre and her creative intentions.
Paul Levy talks to award-winning children’s author, Stuart Reid, about Return of the Snot Zombies. Most authors confine themselves to stuffy talks and signing sessions at Book Fairs. Not Stuart Reid! Not only an acclaimed author of the Gorgeous George books, he is also a man on a mission to get kids reading and loving books. Paul Levy talked to him after his energetic show, Return of the Snot Zombies, which is both educational and huge fun, with plenty of snot thrown in.
Paul Levy talks to Kate Cook about Invisible Woman, a solo comedy show “in which Kate Cook plays an array of crackpot characters in this thrilling tale of derring-do in WWII.” Paul Levy hears how the show came into being and how Kate created the piece and brings it to life on the Fringe stage.
Paul Levy talks to Alison Child and Rosie Wakley about All the Nice Girls. “In 1920s London, Gwen Farrar and Norah Blaney have an on and off stage partnership, singing popular love songs of the day to each other in West End revues and living together openly. At the same time Ella Shields’ music hall act is in decline. All the Nice Girls imagines her reaction to the younger pair as they live the starry life of bright young things. Does she envy their sexual freedom? Will their relationship survive the pressures of the age and the conflicting urges to marry and conform or to party wildly into oblivion?”
Peter Antonio isn’t your typical mentalist nor magician. “Do you have a question about life or the universe? Simply think of your question and Peter will peer inside your head and provide an answer.” Peter goes deep with interviewer Paul Levy about his approach to entertainment and how he keeps his work fresh, interesting and exciting. He’s here at the Fringe with Peter Antonio – Happy Medium.
Paul Levy talks with actors Nick Pearse and Ben Rigby from Rampant Plays about The Gambit by mark Reid, described as “twenty-five years of betrayal played out on a chessboard.” In a frank interview, Nick and Ben chart the play’s development from self-directed piece to one ready to hit the ground running at the Fringe and on tour with the aid of director, Matthew Gould. “The Gambit features a thrilling battle of wits between two titans of the game with opposing outlooks on life, each other and the game itself.”
“Britain 2015 – we take, we buy and then we put it on credit… Sebastian and Penelope are in love, inseparable and living beyond their means. The new house, the latest car, dinner parties with friends… all to keep hold of one person? A physical and humorous drama about how we devour each other emotionally and literally without even knowing it and asks the question what will it take for us to stop? A little dose of humour, a large amount of drama and the makings of some great theatre.” Paul Levy talks director Lorraine Cushnie from Two42 Theatre about Consumption, written by her friend Jo Griffiths.
Award-winning Theatre Movement Bazaar are back home at the Bedlam with their new production, Big Shot, which is ” an explosive vaudevillian creation inspired by The Godfather films and novel. “Paul Levy talks to director, Tina Kronis, and writer, Richard Alger about the TMB “Signature”, and how they deconstruct plays, (and now film), and turn it into such powerful and enjoyable physical theatre. TMB began in New York City as a collaboration between choreographer/director/performer Tina Kronis, and mechanical engineer/writer, Richard Alger. In 1999, the company relocated its base to Los Angeles and has produced eleven original works, garnering awards and terrific reviewsn, presenting its work across the US and in the UK.
In this fascinating interview, Paul Levy talks to Maria Askew and Frode Gjerløw about Jurassic Park – not the play of the film, but instead the “Celebrated Lecoq company present their award-winning five-star sell-out spin on Spielberg’s classic”. “The Park family welcome you to Lyme Regis for their dinotastic DIY adventure. Raptors may be defeated, but every family has its monsters.” Superbolt lift the lid on how they create award-winning physical theatre.
Richard Stamp is the man behind Fringe Guru. He is also the creator of ground-breaking smartphone and mobile app, Ifringe. Richard talks to Paul Levy about the evolution of Fringe coverage, and the role of apps at the Fringe – for performers and punters. Ifringe and a few other apps in Edinburgh might just ease your Fringe – from finding and booking shows, to getting a cab home.
“To Space is your telescope into a future and capsule that will preserve the past. Scientist and performer Dr Niamh Shaw has dreamed of space travel from the age of eight. After a year of interviewing astronauts, astrophysicists, space industries and potential future colonists of Mars, she’s discovered that what was once her childhood dream may soon become a reality. In a multimedia immersive performance that buzzes with new technologies, she explores the beauty, darkness and humanity of Space. What is our attraction to Space? What are we chasing – or escaping from?”. In this interview we get a producer’s perspective on bringing this unique and acclaimed show to the Edinburgh Fringe. Paul Levy asked Joanna Crawley a lot of questions about theatre making and space, in all its forms
Amilia Stewart Conall Keating about Leper and Chip perform in this new play from Dublin by Lee Coffey, directed by Karl Shiels. “Boy meets girl – in the middle of a battering. Boy wrecks bus full of pensioners, girl gets chased by machete-wielding maniac and love without madness isn’t love at all”. We hear about how the play was discovered and arrives at the Edinburgh Fringe via critical success in Ireland. The play offers na “ultra-violent vision of young urban Dublin.” How do these performers deliver both visceral drama and comedy inherent in the work?
Cassandra Hercules and Serin Ibrahim star in Hannah and Hanna in John Retallack‘s play about refugees in Margate., which first played back in 2001 and seems as relevant as ever today. “Having fled her own country, Hanna, 16, from Kosovo meets Hannah, 16, from Margate. Can a shared love of karaoke bring about an unlikely friendship or will the racist tensions of small town Britain prevail?” Paul Levy talks to the performers and also manages to pull in director, James Haddrell from Greenwich Theatre. The interview covers a lot of fascinating ground. How do the performers get into the zone of this intense two-hander? How will the show hit the ground running at the Edinburgh Fringe?
Founded in 2014 by Henry Conklin, Christopher Sladdin and Elske Waite, Gin and Tonic Productions“brings together artists and volunteers based in Edinburgh to produce touring theatre that is intense, raw and electric.” Paul Levy talked to co-founder and Artistic Director, Elske Waite about the history of the company, crowdfunding its current production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and building a creative bridge from their previous Brighton Fringe hit, Hamlet.
An Oak Tree returns to the the Fringe and gets the number one space at Traverse this time around! In this interview Paul Levy attempts to render Tim Crouch speechless, almost succeeds, and both interviewer and interviewee celebrate the screams and bashings of a child sharing the same Emporium cafe space. “An intricate story of loss and suggestion performed by the playwright himself and a different second actor at each performance – an actor who has neither seen nor read a word of the play they’re in until they’re in it.” Tim Crouch talks about this unique piece of theatre and reflects on the process of theatre itself.
George Egg‘s sell-out comedy show comes to the Edinburgh Fringe. Why has it taken this highly acclaimed comedian so long to bring a show to the “biggest” Fringe? Paul Levy found out more about George Egg: Anarchist Cook. “One man. One hour. Three courses. Comedian George Egg is also a fanatical cook with an anarchic approach to making meals. Finding himself dissatisfied with the quality of hotel room service while touring the comedy clubs of the world, George embarks on a project to take matters into his own surprisingly capable hands. ”
Contact Order is a piece of Forum Theatre from Speak Up! Act Out! (working with aBand of Brothers on this occasion). It plays at the Rialto Theatre, and explores ” the story of Mark as he tries to protect and maintain his parental rights. With the support of A Band of Brothers, we will take audiences on an interactive journey of theatre, debate and storytelling as we examine issues of discrimination within our society.” Based on real experiences, producer Alegna Dezlein tells us about this unique production. It plays Saturday 27th June 2015 at 7.30pm. Book here.
Paul Levy talks to writer and director Richard Franklin about The Luck of the Draw, a play described as “a domestic take on World War One based on the letters of an Officer from the Front and the reminiscences of a Private Soldier min his 93rd year.”
Paul Levy talks to director Conor Baum and and producer Mia Terry (from Bird Studios Youth Theatre Group) about Singing in the Rain which plays at Brighton’s Emporium Theatre. Apparently this legendary musical has rarely, if ever, played Brighton. Find out how this company brings the best out of their cast and claims the space at Emporium.
Paul Levy talked to two members of Next Generation Youth Theatre, Shelby Hannon and Olivia Harvey, about The Butterfly Catcher, a youth theatre production, which is ” a high school love story, capturing the feelings and thoughts of young people as they collectively voice their concerns about the pressures placed on them in education.”
The Devil Without fuses the Faust legend with mentalism. “Faust re-imagined. For 500 years, Faust has stayed one step ahead, but the Devil takes any chance to try again & Faust must hide. Despite not opening the door for one bare hour…all too soon – The Devil Without begins to manifest within. A terrifying struggle ensues, resulting in a battle for an audience member’s soul.” Ian Harvey Stone tells us more…
Off the Cuff having been delighting audience in Brighton with their impro shows for years. Off the Cuff TV takes audience ideas and turns them into comedy gold. We chatted to performer Simon Plotkin about how this acclaimed troupe work.
Mickey Wynne is a musician who has played gigs and been in the studio with the best of them. His own new album, Running on Empty, may well feature in an impromptu gig outside the Brighton Spiegeltent Bosco on Sunday 24th May 2015 at 5pm. Paul Levy chatted to Mickey about his music and the importance of the Jubilee Line.
“BEARD bring their special kind of bizarre and joyful comedy to Brighton for the first time.” Paul Levy chats to the comedy duo Rosa Robson and Matilda Wnek about the Footlights, and how they create comedy that makes so many people laugh.