Can you tell me a little bit about yourself and your performing background?
My name’s Ash I’m 21 years old, I grew up in Sheffield, and I’ve spent the majority of my three years at Cambridge neglecting my degree in the pursuit of theatre. My performing background is largely in bad musical theatre… and then when I got to uni some significantly better musical theatre. I was up at the fringe with SiX last year and I think that has to be one of my favourite experiences as a performer (you should go check it out this year, it’s a great show). I’ve found myself playing quite a few Sondheim mums. I’ve also been hugely involved in comedy and was Vice President of the Footlights 2017-18.
Tell me about your show, what it is all about?
Beds and dads. Just like all the greats.
How long have you been working on this show and what is it that makes it relevant to audiences in 2018?
We were cast back in February and have been continuously writing and rewriting it ever since; we had a writing week in Walberswick which was surreally idyllic in the midst of a maelstrom of dissertation hand-ins and exam revision. Comedy and new writing is always relevant, but our show also has a very modern sense of humour. It’s difficult to describe, come see for yourself?
Do you have any top tips for surviving the Edinburgh Fringe Festival – both for performers and visitors to the event?
The food vans are amazing but are killer on the wallet. Be kind to flyerers. Always carry water (buying it can be a right pain in the tits) and see at least one show that you wouldn’t ordinarily choose— you might discover a new favourite… or you might end up seeing something wholly bizarre and awful. Either way, it’s a story.
What has been the funniest or most embarrassing thing that has ever happened to you on stage?
I did a sex scene once which involved a knowing look to the audience and in one performance found myself staring directly into the eyes of London Mayor, Sadiq Khan.
Who are your biggest inspirations in the industry and why?
Olivia Colman is a huge talent crush for me: her comic timing is on point and her characterisation as a straight actor is just so intelligent and believable. Total goals. Aside from that I’d have to say the marvellous Deborah Frances-White. Her podcast, The Guilty Feminist, was a huge eye-opener for me in terms of what comedy can do. Not only is she hilarious, but she actively shares her platform to include less privileged voices making it one of the most progressive, inclusive and inspiring shows out there and on top of that one of the most entertaining.
Do you have any pre-show rituals?
Honey and lemon tea is a staple— maybe that’s a hang up from the musical theatre kid in me.
What other acts are you looking forward to seeing at Edinburgh Fringe?
I’ve managed to wangle tickets to see The Guilty Feminist on 25th August and I am so excited. I’m also up with another show, an original musical called LUCKY, which I have co-written with the fabulous Harry Castle. I can’t wait to see what our talented production team have done with it.
Why do you think people should come and see your show over the thousands of others on at the Fringe?
We’re very proud of how the show‘s come together. Each set list of Pillow Talk is drawn from a huge backlog of sketches we’ve written over the past 6 months so every show has the potential to be different. We’re also big fans of audience interaction and there are a lot of improvised elements to the show too. It’s fresh, funny and so much fun to be a part of.
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