Q & A with Katie Paterson

If you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to take a show to the Ed Fringe, you can read one of our many Q & As with artists currently working up there. Today we have one with Katie Paterson, whose show Minor Disruptions explores the ‘queerness of childhood’ and is showing until the 25th Aug.

AT: Tell us a little about you and an artist and how you came to do what you do…

KP: I studied Drama and Theatre Arts at Birmingham Uni, then trained as an actor at Mountview on the MA, where I started developing Minor Disruptions. I started out thinking I wanted to be a very classical actor-director and have slowly got weirder and weirder in my practice. I’m now some kind of stand up/spoken word/singer/writer hybrid and I’m finding it much more exciting. I didn’t want to make theatre that ignored the audience, so I make them essential to the work.

AT: Tell us about your show, what is it about…

KP: It’s about the queerness of childhood – the way that time stretches oddly, the rules that are enforced but not explained, the confusion and chaos as well as the joy. It’s almost a sketch show of memories, turned into games with the audience. 

AT: What inspired it?

KP: My irritation with people describing childhood as the happiest time of their lives (see also any variation of children are just innocent and carefree, they don’t think about sex, they don’t have any worries, etc) and I thought well, maybe knowing that my sexuality was not the norm was part of what made childhood so stressful, but it was definitely more than that. So I’m trying to put some ‘normal’ experiences on stage in a way that exposes their queerness. 

AT: What do you hope people will take away from watching?

KP: That children are complicated people, not tiny happiness bots, and that the painful parts of life are right next to the hilarious ones.

AT: Describe the show in 6 words…

KP: Funny, chaotic, spontaneous, warm, honest, surprising

AT: What is your experience of the fringe so far?

KP: I’m really loving it. People are so receptive and down for an unusual experience, and the whole atmosphere is a bit special. That’s not to say it isn’t hard, flyering solo and seeing small audience numbers, but I’m so thrilled to be sharing the show and watching so much brilliant work, as well as reconnecting with old friends and making new ones, it’s hard to complain. For every time I’ve had to ring my mum there’s been a dozen brilliant new experiences. Also my tiny team are just brilliant, (Chaz Webb and Karolina Federowicz) and I’m sharing a flat with my best mates so yeah, having a great time! 

Minor Disruptions runs at venue 152 (Paradise in the Augustines) until 25th Aug at 18:45 each day. Book now.

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