Edinburgh Fringe 2022 
Interview

Liberty Dearsly 
The Trial 
Pleasance Courtyard (Beyond)

Aug 5-14, 15:00 /  Tickets
June 29, 2022
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This heady re-imagining of Kafka’s absurdist masterpiece explores the desire to forge your own identity, to find somewhere to belong and to make sense of a nightmare we now all share.

Hi Liberty, thank you for talking to The New Current, how have you been keeping during these strange times?

Hiya, it's great to chat! I've been keeping fairly okay during it all. It's been a bit of a roller-coaster hasn't it, and definitely one with lots of loop the loops but finally it feels like things are on the up and a sense of normality has returned - especially with this sunny British heatwave!

How does it feel to be heading to Edinburgh Fringe with your Debut Show after everything that has happened?

It feels quite monumental to be honest. When we were rehearsing it was insane to just be in a room with so many people again, so it feels quite epic to be taking the show up to such a renowned festival which we've missed over the pandemic. I think many young people including myself really struggled with the lack of connection so it feels like everyone has an appetite to create something joyful and exciting together.

Are there going to be any nerves ahead of your first show at The Pleasance?

Oh yes 100%, you can't do a performance without nerves! They're so needed for that extra adrenaline rush, and for myself and many others in the cast it'll be our first time at the Fringe, which I can imagine will be so exhilarating but daunting as well. For the Young Pleasance having had a 2 year break over the pandemic as well, I bet there will be nervous jitters through the whole creative team too - but nothing that we can't handle!

One of the vital aspects of Edfringe is The Royal Mile during August. Have you got your shows sales patter down or are you still tweaking it?

I have to admit I've not even thought about my sales pitch yet! It's definitely still in the tweaking phases for me, and will continue to be whilst we promote the show! In true Pleasance style we'll keep it spontaneous, playful, and you can expect to see us in our character glad rags down the Royal Mile enticing you to come and see the show.

Can you tell me a little bit about The Trial, what can we expect?

Our show is based on Kafka's novel 'The Trial' which follows the turbulent and trippy story of a character who is arrested but doesn't know what for. During our R&D workshops we explored themes of Big Brother, data hacking, and surveillance, with a Young Pleasance twist of course. Things definitely aren't as they seem.

When you preview a show how much does it change before a major festival and do you still allow yourself some flexibility once a run has started?

We will definitely have a bit of wiggle room as we get settled into our run. We work super hard rehearsing and creating in London then head straight to Edinburgh so we have a fresh run in our heads, then during our first week of shows we will still be tweaking scenes, running bits that need more attention, and even jigging some characters around during the mornings before each performance. So if you watch us on opening night, definitely come back to see us later in the run as new twists may have turned up!

Have you always had a passion for theatre?

Absolutely. It's cheesy but since I've been little I've always loved performing. I used to dress up in flamboyant costumes and do all sorts of characters and stories so I should've guessed acting would be my path back then!

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"We've been encouraged to work hard but also make the absolute most of being in the heart of Edinburgh and the world's largest arts Festival, so no show is too wacky and no venue is too small!"

What has been the most interesting thing you have discovered about yourself and the theatre you want to create after making this show?

In my experience working with an ensemble is always magic. I find it incredible how I can be in a room sharing and creating with people who love what they're doing just as much as I do. It's such a joyful experience to feel that community and togetherness when you make theatre with other people. So I guess I've discovered that I really value that connection, and also that acceptance to show up and give your ideas in a space that is safe. As a Queer Performer that's really important to me, to feel safe and authentic in the space we're creating in. So in all the theatre I create in the future, I want to put that respect and kindness at the forefront.

What one word best describes your show?

 

Disconcerting.

In-between your show how do you hope to get a chance to see other shows at the fringe?

During the first week we'll still be in quite an intense rehearsal and performance period, but once we've got into a rhythm, there will be plenty of time to explore the Fringe and see lots of theatre before or after our shows and into the evenings - I've got a few on my list to go and see already! We've been encouraged to work hard but also make the absolute most of being in the heart of Edinburgh and the world's largest arts Festival, so no show is too wacky and no venue is too small!

What has been the best piece of advice you have been give?

One piece of advice I've carried through theatre and through general life is to try and not worry about what you think other people want you to be. It's much more interesting to be your own quirky self and you'll find that the more authentic you are, the more authenticity you'll receive - which I think is much more rewarding and honest than trying to please other people.

Do you have a favourite theatre quote?

I do! One of my theatre teachers and fabulous mentors used to say to me 'if you're early, you're on time. If you're on time, you're late. And if you're late, you're fired!' I made sure I was at least 20 mins early to auditions after that!

And finally, what do you hope your audiences will take away from The Trial?

I hope our audiences who see the show walk away questioning some things, I hope it makes them think and maybe open some discussions. I hope that they see how hard we have worked to produce this piece and how amazing the young performers in our cast are. And I hope they can feel how important youth theatre is, and see the immense talent Young Pleasance has - it is vital for youth theatre to be taken seriously and what a better place to big ourselves up than at the Edinburgh Fringe festival!