Interview: We Promised To Name Again, Trustworthy We Did

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Ponder Productions’ Can I Name You Again at Peckham Fringe

We have now to apologise to Emily Rennie and Phoebe White, who make up Ponder Productions. We requested them in the event that they want to do an interview again in April, then somebody in our crew misplaced the e-mail. We received’t point out names, however they’ve been severely reprimanded and compelled to observe a West Musical as punishment. Paradoxically, the present in query is known as Can I Name You Again?, one thing we didn’t do initially!

However having lastly bought again in contact, we have been delighted to sit down down with them and discover out extra about their present that’s taking part in at Peckham Fringe 18 & 19 Might.

Can I Name You Again?

It’s August 2016, one of many hottest summers on document, and Steph hasn’t left her room in two weeks. For the seventh time in eight years, her treatment has stopped working. With College looming and massive plans to turn out to be THE It Lady, Steph has restricted time for contemplation. How did she get again to this place? Who CARES about psoriasis, anyway? And can that fixed Skype name ever cease ringing? This coming-of-age comedy explores seen auto-immune issues, feminine physique picture, and overcoming every kind of grief. 

The present focuses on a lady with psoriasis, an auto-immune dysfunction. What made you determine to observe that route?

Emily: I’ve had extreme psoriasis for over a decade – it genuinely appeared to occur to me in a single day. To all of the sudden have a demanding auto-immune dysfunction that impacts so many points of your life at age ten was powerful, and at instances extraordinarily isolating. I’ve been a theatre-lover for so long as I can bear in mind, and have all the time been writing issues down. The concept of creating a present the place a clumsy teenager was coping along with her sickness – amongst different issues – was one thing I’d needed to do for years however by no means actually had the braveness. Then in the future I simply thought: who else goes to do it however me? So I bit the bullet, and right here we’re!

On prime of auto-immune dysfunction, there are themes of feminine physique picture. How vital is it to sort out this topic and hopefully present an viewers that there isn’t one measurement suits all?

Phoebe: The talk on how the feminine physique ought to or shouldn’t look seems like an ever-changing argument I’ve heard all through my life. I feel particularly for younger folks, the strain to slot in, and be favored, can really feel all-encompassing and whenever you add on the strain to look a sure means with a view to obtain that it will probably turn out to be a harmful highway to go down. I feel a present like this one permits the viewers to empathise with the character Steph as we see her purchase into the wonder requirements, nevertheless as she begins to deconstruct them it creates the area for viewers members to permit that very same empathy for themselves.

Emily: Once I first bought identified, I used to be conscious I appeared and felt very totally different to all my associates. I’d rake by way of all these magnificence magazines desperately in search of someone like me. It could actually actually have such a large affect on you, this concept of ‘good’ pores and skin. There’s no such factor! Even now that I’m on treatment and look comparatively clear-skinned, these issues can follow you. Embracing imperfection is hard in right this moment’s society, nevertheless it’s so vital, which is one thing that Steph unpacks throughout her journey. 

Is the play geared toward a youthful viewers resulting from these central themes or do you are feeling it is going to resonate with any viewers?

Phoebe: I imagine that the play is ready to resonate with most audiences. We sort out grief and physique points all through the present in addition to points round self worth. I imagine it’s a kind of exhibits that it is possible for you to to narrate to on some basis both having skilled a few of these themes your self or understanding somebody that has. To me the present feels very bitter-sweet and nostalgic because it jogs my memory of all these awkward phases I went by way of at school attempting to determine who I actually was. We needed to hone in on that tone and embody humour and nostalgia to offset the extra severe moments. 

Is Peckham Fringe the present’s debut?

Phoebe: So we have been fortunate sufficient to indicate it within the Golden Goose Theatre for a two day run again in February, which was very nerve-wracking because it was not solely the primary time an viewers noticed it, however the first time we ourselves have been capable of view it on a stage fairly than a lounge which had been our working rehearsal area. It was nice to see such a heat and constructive response from the viewers after which be given this second alternative. 

And this competition is fairly new, how vital are the alternatives they supply to new theatre firms reminiscent of Ponder Productions?

Phoebe: I imagine that alternatives like this are the foundations of the theatre world. If you take an opportunity on a smaller present with a lesser recognized firm I imagine it all the time seems like a barely extra intimate expertise. I actually have liked going to see work of recent firms, writers, or actors and watched their present develop and blossom. It gives alternatives to get your work on the market and a platform to community and to do what it’s all us creatives like to do: create. 

Emily, you write and carry out the piece, however hand the directing duties over to Phoebe White – is it vital to have another person add a artistic eye that means?

Emily: It’s completely so vital! This play wouldn’t be what it’s with out Phoebe’s unimaginable perception and enter – I couldn’t do that with out her! In fact it helps that we’re such shut associates already, so Phoebe is aware of all concerning the challenges that include this auto-immune situation, and the way vital it felt to showcase on the stage. On a sensible facet I feel it’s additionally so vital to have one other artistic eye on the venture, particularly if it’s a chunk you’ve written. It’s simple to turn out to be blase – and even bored – with your individual work. Simply because we’re so used to it ourselves doesn’t imply it’ll make sense to everybody! 

You’re doing two nights, does that enable you the prospect to placed on a brand new present and check it out first earlier than you determine the place to take it subsequent?

Phoebe: The great factor with theatre isn’t any present will likely be precisely the identical. As quickly because the viewers sits down they turn out to be as a lot part of the present because the appearing and directing. A lot of this present is a dialog with the viewers so it’s crucial to search out that rapport with every viewers and allow them to into the world very similar to you’ll discover the identical relationship in a rise up efficiency. Having performed this present earlier than we have been capable of see any scenes that wanted tweaking and it’s been a pleasure to observe Emily feed off viewers reactions and take a look at new issues on the evening that go well with that viewers.

Emily: Viewers interplay is so enjoyable, particularly within the extra surreal scenes. On our final efficiency I ad-libbed…so much. I’m going to have to really follow the script this time round.

Thanks once more to Emily and Phoebe for each their persistence in ready for us to get again to them and for the time to speak to us lastly.

Can I Name You Again performs at Peckham Fringe 18 and 19 Might. Additional data and bookings could be discovered right here.



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