Melbourne’s own Telia Nevile hits the airwaves for Anywhere Fest. As her comedic character Poet Laureate Telia Nevile, our host broadcasts Live on Air from her lounge room to yours.
Q. Describe your show in under 25 words.
A. An ode to the outsider full of tongue-in-cheek poems set to backing tracks that range from rap to blues, death metal to bubblegum pop.
Q. Anywhere Festival is about making art everywhere. What makes your venue (or in this case, airwaves) unique?
A. There’s something about bringing theatre into your own home, where you can experience it in amongst your own reality and entirely on your own terms, that makes the idea of live-streaming really intriguing. With a show over the internet, which you can watch while you’re in your pajamas curled up on your couch, there’s a lot of possibility for intimacy and honest reaction without any big emotional demands on the audience. I’m both excited and terrified because it’s such a different experience as a performer, but I hope that it will open up new places within the character and that it will expand the audience experience.
Q. If your show were a new My Little Pony, what would it look like? What would its superpower be?
A. Is there a dark, furtive and socially awkward one that reads Proust in public and Mills & Boon in private?
Q. Live on Air sounds like it’s billed as part BBC radio play, part character comedy and part poetry. How do you meld these forms in your show?
A. The poetry is an inherent part of the character — it’s her chosen form of expression and it acts as a pressure valve that releases all her greatest hopes and frustrations. The radio part was inspired by a 90s film called Pump Up the Volume. In this, as in that movie, it allows the protagonist to be entirely, unflinchingly honest because when you’re alone in your room there’s nothing to lose — you can’t see any shock or disappointment or disapproval on anyone’s face because you never really know if anyone’s listening or not. In that aspect, radio is incredibly freeing.
Live on Air runs online from 8 to 16 May, 2013.