Current Occupation and Country of Residence:
Freelance actor/singer/performer; Yoga instructor. Big fan of and volunteer at The Kusasa Project in South Africa. Big fan of Asia to Africa Safaris.
Tell us your Faust Story!
I started getting involved with Faust in 2000. I recall helping backstage for The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe
. Soon after that, I assisted Matthew Gregory with The Sword In The Stone
. The rest is history and certainly some of the best years of my life so far. Through the years, I have been a group leader, assistant leader, director, assistant director, choreographer, scriptwriter, costume designer, make-up artist, artistic designer, performer, touring company member, lamingtons-provider and Starbucks-emergency-runner!
What is your favourite Faust memory?
Almost impossible to answer unless I can mash-up a cache of thousands of memories into one. One thing I can say is I personally love those seconds just before curtains come up on any show – when excitement and anticipation build for everyone in the theatre. Seeing those same seconds in the eyes of the youngest little talents at Faust who are stepping onto stage for the very first time are the most priceless moments.
What was your biggest challenge in participating in drama workshops and productions?
In productions – it’s making sure that each person involved in the production acknowledges that there will always be someone in the audience who might be seeing live theatre for the very first time. (I’m big on firsts!) Even if we’re on our 87th performance of the same show, after having just done a 4-show weekend, we must give the audience a true, fresh and memorable theatre experience.
In drama workshops – it’s keeping that ball up in the air! Literally and figuratively.
What did you gain from your experience at Faust as a student and/or as a Leader?
I’ve very fortunately gained a lifelong connection to a rare breed of people, of all ages, whose talents have made life a lot less ordinary to say the least. To this day, I keep what I could call a ‘Faust mindset’ on in the form of finding creative solutions, having a genuine intention in what I do, striving to be a teamplayer, and continuing to pursue passions. And of course, mastering watermelon tai chi is a skill honed through Faust that comes in handy.
How did studying Drama and Theatre impact your life?
It’s given me both discipline in and just enough structure to the art of theatre. And in turn, ironic as it may sound, has helped me find more freedom to express myself creatively. It also gave me the chance to interact and work with people whom I consider masters of their craft – all of whom continue to be very inspirational.
What was the most valuable piece of advice you got from a director / leader at Faust?
There are many! But I certainly have favorites:
Never underestimate the value and strength of silence.
Comedy is 100% serious.
There are no small roles….
And here’s one Faust veterans will recognize:
When a prop falls on stage, pick it up! (Any guesses who the source is?)
How would you describe Faust to someone new to drama and theatre?
Re-creating life on a live theatre stage will make you appreciate real life off-stage all the more. You’ll become a better observer, listener, leader and follower. You’ll have fun and enjoy responsibility. Faust has all that to offer. And you most certainly have a lot to offer back, you just don’t know it yet. It will be the best adventure.