An Interview with Aoife Fagan
From Ireland via Los Angeles,
Jewellery making has never been so dramatic
Hello Aoife, so where are you from & where are you at, geographically speaking?
Hello! I’m from Dublin, Ireland, but I’m living in LA at the moment.
Can you tell us about your theatrical training?
After secondary school I spent a year in Stratford-upon-Avon studying with Year Out Drama Company. I then went on to train at the Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute and did their two year conservatory. Training at Strasberg was such a formative time for me. We explored sense memory, animal exercise (which was my favourite!) and improvising into the scene which helped my work a lot.
How did you end up in LA?
My brother is an animator and he made a short film a few years ago. He went to LA to promote it and he let me go with him. I really loved the city and the relaxed culture. It was unlike anywhere I had ever been so I auditioned for drama school out there and thankfully got in. I’ve been back and forth since and that’s also where I met my husband who is from LA.
What is at about Theatre that makes you tick?
I love the rawness of theatre. As an audience member, I love watching stories and seeing the actors go through different experiences. I can be quite a shy person, so playing a character really gives me the freedom to say the things I feel I can’t say or do in real life.
You are bringing a play to this year’s Edinburgh Fringe; can you tell us about it?
My solo show, ‘Glimmer of a Rainbow,’ explores what beauty is and what society deems valuable all in the backdrop of a vintage jewellers. My character Orla is working in a jewellers and is tired of being told who she is by everyone around her and is trying to figure out who she wants to be.
Can you tell us about the writing process of Glimmer of a Rainbow?
During the Pandemic, I took a writing for Solo Performance class through Berg Studios which was taught on zoom by Ann Noble. I was so worried because I had no idea what I wanted to write about. I thought I needed to have an idea or a fully fledged story before I started to write. Ann told me to just write what came to me and see where it took me. That was the best advice because it freed me up so much and really helped me find my voice.
Who are Unmuted Participants?
Unmuted Participants are a collective of solo performers that came out of Ann’s solo class. In April we presented, Solo Flight, our first online storytelling festival. It’s amazing to be a part of such a supportive group of artists.
What is the biggest obstacle you overcame while putting your play together?
Performing, or even reading my own work out loud was really difficult for me. I thought that performing my own work would be easier in a way, but it really terrified me. I realised that as an actor I’m always hiding behind someone else’s words, but with my own work, there’s nowhere to hide. It created another layer of vulnerability that I wasn’t anticipating.
How much of your own experience is in Glimmer of a Rainbow?
My show is definitely semi-autobiographical. I think it’s hard not to put some aspects of your own experience into your work. It scared me at first, but I needed to write it for myself and not for how people might perceive it.
You’ve got 20 seconds to sell the show to somebody in the streets of Edinburgh, what would you say?
A girl’s reluctant journey through a material world. She’s trying to figure out who she is, while also dealing with a slight jewellery obsession.
Glimmer of a Rainbow
19,21,23,25 August (15:10)
Posted on July 28, 2022, in Fringe 2022. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.
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