30 September 2011

Fringe artist profiles part 4

Internet gremlins stole their original links, so here's Timothy Clark, Bron Battern, Ash Flanders and Kate McLennan.


Timothy Clark
4sKin




What three words best describe you Fringe show?
Good, Clean, Smut

Who does your show speak to?
It's as cliched as a slow clap, but everybody really. It's four completely different styles of humour, so we've got a little something for everyone.

What other Fringe show do you wish you were in?
World Mixtape Comedy. Those guys are solid as a rock

What do you love most about the Melbourne Fringe?
Every comedian is coming out of the woodwork, and all of them are desperate to try out new material. It's great to see such different concepts and themes being woven into their shows.

How many Melbourne Fringes have you performed in?
Approximately zero, but I'm expecting that number to rapidly climb in the next few weeks.

What was your most embarrassing moment on stage?
Realising, right after a five-minute gig, that while I was on, they forgot to turn the house music off in the background. Thank god, I thought I was just having a shit night.

Do you have any pre- or post-show rituals?
I form a circle, put my hand in the middle and start chanting "Ducks! Ducks! Ducks!"...yeah, I don't get along with other comedians.

What’s your favourite theatre superstition? Do you believe it?
Saying "The Scottish Play" instead of "Macbeth". If I may quote the great poet Batman: "Theatre actors are a cowardly and superstitious lot".

Who will hate your Fringe show?
Probably me, the next morning.

What is the first theatre show you remember seeing?
The Wiggles Present: Big Red Car. Captain Feathersword was such a great method actor, and Murray was so naturalistic it was scary. Jeff was a little lackluster though.

What director/actor/writer would you just die to work with?
Sidney Lumet, but then I would literally have to die to work with him.

How do you have your coffee?
I like my coffee like I like my women. Cold, bitter, and you can get it for $3.50 on the side of the road.

What’s the best pizza topping?
Another pizza.

What do love most about your Fringe show?
The people I'm doing the show with (mad props to Dil, Suren and Morven). We have four completely different styles of comedy, so it's really got a little something for everyone. It's like a Christmas hamper, but you haven't been saving for it all year.

review

Bron Batten
Sweet Child of Mine


What three words best describe you Fringe show?
Awkward family photos.

Who does your show speak to? 
Anyone whose parents want them to get a real job

What other Fringe show will you NOT miss? 
Miles O'Neil's World Around Us and Nick Coyle's Me Pregnant!.

What other Fringe show do you wish you were in? 
Anna Lumb's I Heart Jack so I could roller skate like she does

What do you love most about the Melbourne Fringe? 
The diversity and enthusiasm of the artists; it's very inspiring.

How many Melbourne Fringes have you performed in? 
This will be my 8th (Oh god!)

If you could invite anyone to see your show (and you know they would come), who would it be?
Ricky Gervais and the Dalai Lama.

What is the best theatre advice you’ve received? 
Always make sure you're in your light and don't mumble.

What was your most embarrassing moment on stage? 
Failing my grade one AMEB saxophone exam as a 26 year old in front of 300 people.

Do you have any pre- or post-show rituals? 
Pre-show: pacing. Post-show: beer.

What’s your favourite theatre superstition? Do you believe it? 
The Scottish play ritual – and yes.

What was the last book you read? 
Will Self's Book of Dave.

What TV show do you never miss? 
True Blood and Misfits.

What film will you watch again and again? 
Strictly Ballroom.

Who will hate your Fringe show? 
My Mum (Probably! And she's in it!)

What show changed how you see theatre? Why?
I saw a piece in the Melbourne Festival a couple of years ago called An Anthology of Optimism by CAMPO which is Belgian artist Pieter De Buysser and Canadian Jacob Wren. It was a performance/lecture type work about an optimist and a pessimist having a philosophical discussion about the merits of both stances as a dominant world view.

I was reading an article by one of the artists and he said 'anything where you are in a room with other people pretending to be somewhere else is just old-fashioned'. I realised that I want to explore and make work that generates collective experience, because for me, that's what live performance is all about.
Apart from their theatrical manifesto, I admired their elegant approach to performance making. It was simple without being simplistic, made complex philosophical theories entertaining and accessible and was a tender, funny and thought provoking meditation on an idea everyone can identify with.

What was your first time on stage? 
Jazz ballet concert when I was 8. There was a lot of lycra, sequins and Michael Jackson involved.

What is the first theatre show you remember seeing? 
An amateur musical production of Me and My Girl (and yet I still do theatre!).

If you had access to the TARDIS, what performance would you see first? 
Tom Waits, Jeff Buckey, The Beatles and The Wooster Group's adaptation of The Crucible on acid.

What director/actor/writer would you just die to work with? 
Wes Anderson or Michel Gondrie.

What is your favourite theatre space in Melbourne?
Witches in Britches Theatre Restaurant

Where in Melbourne do you always take visitors? 
Cheap China Town dumplings and The Exford Hotel.

How do you have your coffee? 
Weak flat white with one.

What’s the best pizza topping? 
At the moment, prosciutto and blue cheese with fresh basil and lemon.

What do love most about your Fringe show? 
Hanging out with my Dad and seeing how excited he is about finally getting a chance to be onstage!


Pash Flanders
Fugly


Ash Flanders founded trash camp company Sisters Grimm with Declan Greene. To make up for things like the Helpman award-nomination (Dec), critical acclaim (Dec), Writers Festival panels (Dec), sold out stand up (Ash), critical acclaim (Ash) and Dracula’s (Ash), the Sisters are gathering Melbourne’s Fugliest and taking over the Melbourne Fringe Club for one night.

What three words best describe you Fringe show? 
Messy, Wild, Sorry.

Who does your show speak to? 
Partygoers, tranny-chasers, bedwetters and ne'er-do-wells.

What other Fringe show will you NOT miss?  
Bron Battern's Sweet Child of Mine and I know there's a lot of noise outside but you have to close your eyes by I'm Trying To Kiss You.

What other Fringe show do you wish you were in? 
Um.....

What do you love most about the Melbourne Fringe? 
The chance to see all our friends do what they love. And then cuss each other out.

How many Melbourne Fringes have you performed in? 
Three.

If you could invite anyone to see your show (and you know they would come), who would it be? 
Jan Brady; to show her that freaks and losers are secretly the best people.

What is the best theatre advice you’ve received? 
"No one has time for your bullshit, Ash."

What was your most embarrassing moment on stage? 
Clearly none of Sisters Grimm embarrass easily. One time Declan (the other founding Sister) ate raw meat and vomited on himself whilst I pretended to perform cunnilingus on him (of course we were playing women). I was only embarrassed because as the vomit ran down my neck; I knew I will clearly never be punk or hardcore... I'm just too damn prissy.

Do you have any pre- or post-show rituals? 
I have one rule: you can self-loathe pre-show but self-harming is strictly a post-show treat.

What’s your favourite theatre superstition? Do you believe it? 
I heard that if you say the words Rhonda Burchmore 19 times whilst looking into a mirror she will appear and sing to you. Naturally I'm too scared to test it out.

What was the last book you read? 
Manservant and Maidservant by Ivy Compton-Burnett. And Tammy Faye’s autobiography. 

What TV show do you never miss? 
How Clean is Your House, Judge Judy, America's Next Top Model and Rupaul's Drag Race.

What film will you watch again and again? 
Desperate Living.

Who will hate your Fringe show? 
Anyone who despises fun, mess and the lovable Angus Cerini.

What show changed how you see theatre? 
Why? Oh god I don't know. 

What was your first time on stage?
 I played a very compelling Wise Man in a school play.

What is the first theatre show you remember seeing? 
Return to the Forbidden Planet. A sci-fi jukebox musical with dialogue taken from Shakespeare. I would still love that show.

If you had access to the TARDIS, what performance would you see first? 
Maybe Bette Davis in The Night of the Iguana. Apparently it was just awful.

What director/actor/writer would you just die to work with? 
Justin Bond ... maybe.

What is your favourite theatre space in Melbourne? 
I'm partial to a Brunswick Lounge room.

Where in Melbourne do you always take visitors? 
Nowhere, my visitors understand my agoraphobia.

How do you have your coffee? 
In an IV drip.

What’s the best pizza topping? 
Mushroom and chilli.

What do love most about your Fringe show? 
It's a FREE PARTY with THE BEST PEOPLE performing NEW MATERIAL all in the name of a GOOD TIME.




Kate McLennan
Homeward Bound



Writer and performer Kate McLennan has created work for the Melbourne Fringe since 2001. In 2006, The Debutante Diaries won a whole heap of awards and made us want to wear white frilly frocks.  In last Fringe's Livin' The Dream, Kate broke away from fiction because her own life was as funny as her creations. This year we find out what happened when she faced a break up, moved back her parents and ran away to New York.


What three words best describe your Fringe show?
Tales about Dad.

Who does your show speak to?
Homeward Bound started out as my ‘break-up’ show about moving back in with my parents and how my situation was completely juxtaposed by my younger sister getting married and having a baby. But my director, the very clever Celia Pacquola, said to me, “Kate I think this show is about you and your dad” – and she was right. Really this is a love letter to him I guess, along with my humorous missteps toward getting back on my feet. I think anyone who has been a bridesmaid or had their heart broken will identify with the show – but essentially it’s a positive show about family, I want people to have a happy time in the show.

What other Fringe show will you NOT miss?
There’s so much great stuff on, but Anne Edmond’s show My Banjo’s Name is Steven is at the top of my list, along with Bron Batten’s Sweet Child of Mine and Cautionary Tale of Barry von Peabody.

What other Fringe show do you wish you were in?
Fugly.

What do you love most about the Melbourne Fringe?
The whole fringe community, staff and performers alike, are incredibly supportive and adventurous. The Fringe organisers; from my first show in 2001 through until this year, have always put in such a huge amount of effort to create and maintain a festival where artists feel safe enough to be brave. It’s a gift for someone who makes their own work.

How many Melbourne Fringes have you performed in?
I have been involved in the festival in one capacity or another for the past 11 years – but this year will be my 9th show.

If you could invite anyone to see your show (and you know they would come), who would it be?
My dad...and my niece, but a 15-year-old version of her.

What is the best theatre advice you’ve received?
“When you’re on stage, your main objective should be to get to the pub.”

What was your most embarrassing moment on stage?
A few years ago I performed at the HiFi Bar for the Melbourne International Comedy Festival – it was a packed house on a Saturday night because everyone was there to see US comic Patton Oswalt. I made a series of blunders, the first one being my decision to do a character, the second - to do a character with no costume or make-up and the third occurred when I changed my mind about which character I was doing literally seconds before I set foot on the stage. I died a horrible death. The only sound that could be heard was my supportive friend Dan Ilic trying to laugh me back to life. It was horrific. I went home and Googled “Diploma of Education”. But it taught me some really valuable lessons.

Do you have any pre- or post-show rituals?
When I was an “actor” I’d always do a vocal warm up – now that I do stand-up my ritual usually just includes excessive toilet use.

What was the last book you read?
It sounds trite but it was Tina Fey’s Bossypants – I love the woman.  She just puts her head down and does the bloody work.

What TV show do you never miss?
My schedule isn’t great for ritualistic tv viewing – I’m a dvd box set junkie though and can’t go past Friday Night Lights because it makes me believe that there’s good in the world. And Tim Riggins is hot.

What film will you watch again and again?
Best in Show.

What was your first time on stage?
Funnily enough I was 14, in a self-devised drama school show called The Wedding – I played my dad and did a speech about how much money the wedding cost and how crap the food was.

What is the first theatre show you remember seeing?
The Woolly Jumpers came to my school when I was very young.

What director/actor/writer would you just die to work with?
The Cohen Brothers or Christopher Guest.

What is your favourite theatre space in Melbourne?
I love La Mama, but I’ve never actually performed there. The Butterfly Club is my next fav; as a performer it really feels like you and the audience are all in it together. I love that.

Where in Melbourne do you always take visitors?
I hook them in with a Sunday session at The Standard.

How do you have your coffee?
Latte, 1 sugar.

What’s the best pizza topping?
I Carusi in Brunswick do an amazing leek and gorgonzola pizza. I can’t go past it.

What do you love most about your Fringe show?
I love that I get to do a show where the fourth wall goes up and down, so I can talk directly to the audience, but still do characters and bring the audience into my mum and dad’s lounge room.

review from the Comedy Festival




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