Interview: My festival: Kirsten Vangsness

My festival: Kirsten Vangsness, Mess and Cleo, Theo and Wu, Assembly Rooms
My festival: Kirsten Vangsness, Mess and Cleo, Theo and Wu, Assembly Rooms
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'That’s the best thing– the ability to watch this beautiful city create a space for all these people to infiltrate and share their individual art they feel so strongly about'

I only have time to see one show in Edinburgh. Why should I go to yours?
You should either go see Cleo, Theo and Wu or my one-woman show, MESS. However, if you only have time for one, I recommend you see Cleo, Theo and Wu because we are the only musical feminist historical space romp where the question, “How do you be a woman?” is answered, and part of our show takes place in a vagina. I’m sure you’ve seen the show where the whole play is in the vagina or none of the play is in it, ours is a part so this is entirely different.
MESS is about quantum physics and time happening all at once, and the voices inside our head that scream at us while we’re trying to make our dreams come true. And church camp.

Now I think of it, I’ve got time to see two. What else should I definitely go to?
Definitely Tom Lenk’s show, “Tom Lenk is Trash.” I saw a part of this show when he was workshopping it in Los Angeles and he is spontaneous and a joyous performer who takes a lot of onstage risks (and he’s one of my dearest mates).

What are the best and worst things that have happened to you at the Edinburgh festival?
The worst thing that has happened to me is that this is only the first time I’ve been here. Everything is so glorious and I’m feeling overwhelmed with all the glory. But also, that’s the best thing– the ability to watch this beautiful city create a space for all these people to infiltrate and share their individual art they feel so strongly about. It’s touching to see a whole place relinquish their home and come together so other people can share stuff they made.

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Please describe where you’re living this month.
I am living at Eden Locke for the month, which is A DELIGHT.

What’s your favourite place in the city and why?
Since I’ve never been here, the entire city is my favourite place in the city.

Who do you most like spending time with at the festival?
I lean toward being an introvert, so when I’m not with team Fempire (that’s what we call ourselves) I love to spend time with a good pen and my journal. Or making out with someone. Or having a great talk.
Or all three in 10-minute blocks.

Where can I find you at 9am, 9pm and 2am?
At 9am I am usually walking to see a thing, at 9pm I’m eating and/or walking to see a thing, and at 2am I am either doing something incredibly fun or I am fast asleep.

What’s the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning?
When I wake up, I find myself singing this silly song I learned when I was a teacher that I sing to my cats when I feed them. The pet missing is no joke.

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What’s the last thing you do before you go to bed?
I believe in going to bed with a smile on your face, so whatever brings that is what I am doing.

Tell us something about you that would surprise people.
I’m actually shy and can put on a good act of being not shy.

Thanks for the interview! I’d like to buy you a drink. Where are we going and what are we drinking?
If we were in Los Angeles, I would say we’re going to the Blinking Owl Distillery in Santa Ana, CA because I am a part-owner and it’s my favorite place to hang out. However, since I am an Edinburgh Festival Fringe virgin, you tell me where we’re going, and Scotch all the way, or gin, or a pint. You’re buying, surprise me.

Mess and Cleo, Theo and Wu at Assembly Rooms until 24 August

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