Inspired by the hurricane in Miami last year, Zoo is an inventive comedy drama of heroism and friendship, co-directed by Hamish MacDougall, performed by Lorna Beckett and Lily Bevan, and has hit the Fringe this August.
Lily spoke with The Fountain about the premise of the show and provides some tips for first timers to the Fringe.
TF: You are performing at the Edinburgh Fringe this year, how exciting?
Yes, we are thrilled! It is great to be going back with new piece of work as we love the Fringe, it has such fantastic audiences and it’s a good platform to debut a show.
TF: Your show certainly sounds intriguing, what is the premise?
Zoo is about two women, Bonnie and Carol – one in America and one in the UK, who both work with and love animals and who have both had a tricky time with people. It’s based on the real story of the hurricane hitting a zoo in Miami last year and how the zoo keepers responded. The story then jumps to Yorkshire and another animal chapter. When the going gets tough – their friendship helps them through.
TF: And what drove the project, where did your influences lie?
I love writing female protagonists in unusual contexts. I saw an interview with an American zoo keeper during the Miami hurricane last year and thought she would be wonderful to write about. My influences include Monty Python, Victoria Wood, Alan Bennett, Mike Leigh and Rash Dash. I like all kinds of work from the daft to the naturalistic, but mainly work with a big heart and lot of colour and quirkyness. It’s been fun writing about animals and lovely celebrity zoologist Lucy Cooke has been advising us!
TF: What are your plans for the Fringe, having been before are there any tips or musts you would offer to first-time performers?
I’d like to climb Arthur’s Seat with a wee dram of whisky and some chocolate biscuits.
For first timers I’d say try not to get too stressed. Try to get enough rest and not to worry about anyone else’s show apart from your own. To make friends, see shows, reach out to people you didn’t know before and have a lot of fun.
TF: And what are your future plans beyond your show?
We are hoping to take it on to further shows in London and maybe beyond. Exciting! Then I’m writing a new play for The Globe’s ‘Dark Night of the Soul’ Season over the Winter.
Zoo, Assembly George Square Studio Four, August 2nd – 26th (not 13th, not 20th), 11am