What shows or projects have you done with ETT?
Taming of the Shrew and Two Trains Running
Where is home for you?
London, always. South.
Where is your home away from home?
Stratford upon Avon. Good enough for Shakespeare…
How did you bring home with you on tour?
Candles. And a good travel pillow for naps in the dressing room.
Which city was your favourite to visit on tour with ETT?
Southampton. Hadn’t played there before. And the theatre was full of nice people -which always helps. The manager at Ipswich was lovely. Northampton holds a special place in my heart – I studied there. I like touring!
Touring is important because everyone should be able to see theatre (live!) without having to travel large distances, and that choice shouldn't be dictated by pure economics. It makes better actors and better audiences.
Northampton holds a special place in my heart - I studied there.
What gem did you discover on tour with ETT ?
Pub near Oxford. Great pizzas and nice beers.
What are your touring essentials?
Games console and a good book. And a DAB radio. Just to keep the occasional loneliness at bay
What’s your go-to recipe whilst on tour?
Spaghetti Carbonara. Quick, delicious and gives lots of energy
What have been your career highlights so far?
Two Trains Running was easily the biggest challenge. Films with Stellan Skaarsgaard who taught me so much. Maybe the season at the National. I jumped up a few levels as the person I was understudying left to do a movie. I don’t know. Maybe i haven’t had it yet. I’d like to direct. Maybe I’ll get the chance.
Which artist(s) do you most admire and why?
Orson Welles, Toni Morrison and Thierry Henry. Distinctive and inspirational. Little compromise but full of talent.
What music inspires you?
Hip hop. Forever. Lyrical and playful and so close to my upbringing it sometimes makes me weep. Sufjan Stevens and Kate Bush also faves.
What image or video inspires you?
There’s a scene in The West Wing which is just full of so much good acting, I almost can’t bear it. Anything from the first 3 seasons of that, please.
What piece of writing or quote inspires you?
Shakespeare: I’m doing The Winter’s Tale at the moment. Or was supposed to. There’s a bit where my character has to describe how he feels about his son. It’s heartbreaking. There’s also a scene in Shogun by James Clavell which I’ve read maybe 5 times. It’s a light bit of fiction really but, oh God, it gets me every single time. I’m a softy really.
What, for you, makes a good piece of art?
Truth. That, and bravery.
There's a scene in The West Wing which is just full of so much good acting, I almost can't bear it.
Be kind to yourself. Despite all its shams, drudgeries and broken dreams, it's still a beautiful world.
If you were cast away on a desert island, which 5 plays would you take with you and why?
Ma Raineys Black Bottom
Our Country’s Good
Death and the Horsemen
What you would say to emerging artists to encourage them to take their work on the road or join an ETT tour?
It’s the fastest way to get better. And the truest. It’s hard. But if it was easy, everyone would do it. Your work is truly appreciated and you make friends forever. Im still in touch with the majority of people i did an ETT tour with.
Window or aisle seat?
Favourite way to travel?
If you could have any superpower, which would you choose?
Our industry is currently experiencing an incredibly challenging time. Do you have any recommendations for others of how to stay hopeful and creative during this time?
Write. Anything and everything. Read. And practice by watching great acting. Then copy it. Write a list of what you want to do when you finish. How do you get there? Be kind to yourself. Despite all its shams, drudgeries and broken dreams, it’s still a beautiful world.
Andrew French’s biog:
WHILE WE’RE HERE & I LIKE MINE WITH A KISS (Bush Theatre); THIS FLESH IS MINE/WHEN NOBODY RETURNS (Border Crossings); THE IPHEGENIA QUARTET (The Gate); BULLY BOY (Mercury Theatre Colchester); BOI BOI IS DEAD & REFUGEE BOY (West Yorkshire Playhouse); THE INITIATE/OUR TEACHER IS A TROLL (Roundabout Season, Paines Plough); JULIUS CAESAR & ROMEO AND JULIET (Royal Shakespeare Company); MEASURE FOR MEASURE (Almeida Theatre); MONSTER (Royal Exchange Manchester); AS YOU LIKE IT (Wyndhams Theatre London); REFERENCE TO SALVADOR DALI…(Arcola/Young Vic London); THE TAMING OF THE SHREW & THE TEMPEST (Nottingham Playhouse Theatre); MERCHANT Of VENICE & TROILUS AND CRESSIDA (Royal National Theatre); THE MERCHANT OF VENICE & THE HONEST WHORE (Shakespeare Globe Theatre); THINGS FALL APART (West Yorkshire/Royal Court Theatre); THE TEMPEST (Shared Experience).
ARTIFICIAL HORIZON (Artificial Horizon Limited); BREAKING THE BANK (Black Hangar Studios); SONG FOR MARION (WH Films); ASSASINATION GAMES (MPCA Films); EXORCIST: THE BEGINNING (Morgan Creek); EXORCIST: DOMINION (Morgan Creek USA); THE MERCHANT OF VENICE (BBC Films); DOCTOR SLEEP (Kismet Films); TAILOR OF PANAMA (Columbia Pictures).
A VERY ENGLISH SCANDAL (BBC Television); MARVIN CAN’T FAIL (Hat Trick); CAPITAL (Kudos for BBC 1); EASTENDERS (BBC Television); HOLBY CITY (BBC Television); DOCTORS (BBC Television); PERFECT PARENTS (ITV Television); PRIMEVAL (Impossible Pictures/ITV Television); SOUNDPROOF, BLAST! (Films/BBC2 Television); THE BILL (Thames Television); TRUST (Box TV), IN DEEP (Valentine Productions); A TOUCH OF FROST (Yorkshire Television); CASUALTY (BBC TV); FAMILY AFFAIRS (Channel 5); BURNSIDE (Thames Television); TOUGH LOVE (Granada Television).
DOCTOR WHO: ORIGINAL SIN (Big Finish Productions); THE MOTHER OF…(BBC Radio 4); THE LAST SUPPER (BBC Radio 3).