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The Swellest of Mobs

Things I’m glad I lugged to Edinburgh: ·My gym kit ·My Kindle and other things to read ·My denim jacket that takes a long time to dry
Things I’m genuinely glad I took to Edinburgh ·Comfortable shoes ·Absolutely no smart clothes ·Tupperware ·My Tinkerbell travel mug ·Two sets of headphones (the dog ate one)
As ever, Edfringe was a long, crazy, tiring but fun month.At the half way mark it seemed that it would never end and that I’d be destined to walk up hill for an hour a day (ok, half an hour, the way home was downhill). But it did and all of a sudden, I was fighting my way onto a train at Waverley and heading back to London.
At the fringe in 2017 I had a solo show and mainly flyered on my own.I had a lot of wonderful support from family and friends but if I wasn’t there, there was no show.This year couldn’t have been more different.
The Swell Mob by Flabbergast Theatre was an immersive show with a rotating cast of 30.Yes 30!There was a core cast of 10 (of which I was one) who were there for …
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Dive in, lose yourself

“Hi everyone, just to let you know, I’ve been cast in an immersive show and I’m heading off to Edinburgh in August”
“Brilliant!”“Congratulations!”“Well done!”“Exciting!”
“What is an immersive show?”
Ah.Yes.Exactly.What is an immersive show?After two weeks of R&D I think I can now answer that question.
Immersive theatre is thething at the moment.With the huge success of companies such as Secret Cinema, dining opportunities like The Fawlty Towers Dining Experience and the current birthday party phenomenon that is escape rooms – the audience for immersive work is huge.Audiences are looking for a thrill.An up-close experience.Something a little different.
My go-to for definitions is usually Google/Wikipedia.In this case “immersive” is lumped in with “interactive theatre” with Wikipedia saying “...immersive theatre, which brings the audience into the same playing space as the performers, obliterating any walls that separate the audience from the performers”
I’m working with the fabulous Flab…

"God I hope I get it"

Auditions, castings, workshops – they’re never the same and they are all a bit odd.
Auditions are a necessary evil of the acting profession.I’m not sure I’ve ever met anyone who really enjoys auditions but we all rejoice when we get them and despair when we don’t.
For the uninitiated, I’ll describe the different types
A fairly standard audition You have the script in advance, you read it, you prepare your part.At the audition, you perform the scenes you were asked to practice in advance and possibly read from another part of the script, which because you are well prepared, you are already familiar with.
“Bring a monologue” auditions Variety of reasons for these.If it’s a Shakespeare play, they may want to see your grasp of the Bard as many people are not strong sight readers, especially with Shakespeare.For other works, a monologue is seen alongside a script reading and can provide a bit of variety for the director.Sometimes the script isn’t finished.Sometimes, they don’t know what the hell…

Awake: Part 2 - The North and the South

Awake: Part 2 Edinburgh and Sydney
If it hasn’t rained within 24 hours of arriving in Edinburgh, you must be in the wrong place.I love the city, but boy does it rain.
My show is being put on as part of the Free Fringe and as such my first full day in Edinburgh is spent helping put posters up in other Free Fringe venues.This is actually really fun, meeting lots of the comedians and performers and checking out the other venues.I also attend a session for people doing solo shows organised by EdFringe and meet some lovely fellow performers.Over the month, many of us manage to support each other’s shows which was really wonderful.
The venue for my show is new to the roster this year, I pop in to say hi and see the space and then all too soon it’s August the 3rd and I’m out flyering for Awake.It’s a mildly terrifying experience which does get easy as the month draws on.Flyering can be draining, demoralising, humiliating and also engaging, hilarious and uplifting.It’s all of these things for 25 …

Awake: Part 1 - The Road to Edinburgh

Awake:Part 1 The Road to Edinburgh By Miranda Colmans January 2017 The January blues hit. Hard.So much so that my colleagues at my permanent-temp job think that there is something seriously wrong with me.I’m in a terrible mood a lot of the time.Something has to change.
February 2017 By chance, I see that The Space Theatre are doing a writing challenge “28 Plays in 28 Days”.It starts the next day.I sign up without really thinking about it and then wonder what on earth I’ve got myself into.I’m not a hugely competitive person, however I am a bit OCD which means that once I start something, I like to finish it.During the month, I write a play each day, in a myriad of styles and genres.It is stretching and enriching.
Taking part gives me the confidence boost I need to take the plunge and apply for a slot at the Edinburgh festival.So, mid-Feb, mid writing challenge, I apply with little more than a summary and a snazzy tag line – and get a place.
Next task – quit the day job.
Tick!Well, sort of.I app…

Going Cold Turkey

Going Cold Turkey
Social media.Love it or hate it, it’s here to stay.You can’t escape it.Every programme on TV helpfully puts its #suggestedhastag at the bottom of the screen and even David Dimbleby is reminded to mention it during Question Time each week – though I often feel he isn’t quite sure what Twitter is…
Every Lent I like to give myself a challenge and this year I decided to quit social media.I’m not a big Facebook-er unless shamelessly self-promoting whatever I happen to be doing in my career but I was feeling that Instagram was beginning to take over my life.I’d love to know the hours I’ve spent scrolling, staring vacuously at my phone screen, it would be days’ worth of time.And this is disturbing.It is a literal waste of time.Instagram does have its uses – there are some lovely communities on there and who doesn’t love to see a photo of a kitten?However, it is also known as a hotbed for battering confidence and depleting self-worth.It’s easy to forget when looking on Instagr…

La La loved it?

I spend a lot of January and February each year running around to various cinemas, watching all of the films nominated for the best picture award at the BAFTAs and Oscars – it’s a fun challenge which takes me to locations all over London and to see films which I may not otherwise have watched.
La La Land was arguably this year’s runaway success even though it didn’t (or did briefly) win the Academy Award for Best Picture.  However, talking to lots of people about it, I have noticed that it wasn’t the triumph with audiences that the press would have us believe.  Broadly my friends fell into two camps:  my actor and big theatre going friends tended to love it.  Everyone else was a bit more “meh”.
I think the reason for its success at the awards is twofold.  Firstly, Hollywood loves a bit of navel gazing.    There were so many times during La La Land that I was wryly laughing to myself but no one else around me was.  I could really empathise with Emma Stone’s character – I’ve been in thos…