‘We wanted to do something dynamic’

by Ian Begley
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Sophie Jo Wasson is a young Irish actress who recently finished up with the touring production of The Poor Little Boy With No Arms, which she devised and co-wrote.
This week, The Gazette caught up with Sophie to see what a day in her life was like while preparing for this unique and bizarre dark comedy.
“We did four weeks of rehearsals, which would be pretty much standard for every show. While touring we basically arrived at each venue a couple of hours before the play began to do checks until the show started at 8pm.
“It all depends what time I get up at in the morning. Many actors have meetings, auditions and are maybe prepping for another show so their day-to-day schedule would change a lot.
“I work part-time in a bakery and if I have a show on the night I would probably get up around nine.
“Every actor seems to have different ways of making things work for them.
“The way in which this play was thought up was through us wanting to make something really entertaining and also something a little spooky.
“We thought that a lot of the theatre shows that we’ve seen were a little diluted and safe. We wanted to do something a little dynamic and challenging for an audience.
“The Poor Little Boy With No Arms is a play on the common Irish empathy that many people have towards those who have something wrong with them.
“He’s the name of one of the characters, but he certainly doesn’t sum it up the play – there’s a lot more to it. The play constantly changes between two and six characters. I play a woman and a couple of other characters, including a donkey.”
Asking if it is hard to constantly change characters, Sophie said: “No, it’s the best craic ever and it’s so much fun. As an actor it’s such a gift to be able to just get on stage and play multiple roles and have a bit of craic creating them and making them different.
“It’s fun for the audience as well because of the whole nature of the play.
“We even change characters in front of them, but eventually they just accept it and accept that there are more than six characters on stage.”
Asked how she unwinds after a night of giving it socks on stage, Sophie said “Pints”.
“It’s such a stereotype for actors to enjoy having a few drinks after a show, but when you come off stage you’re just filled with adrenaline.
“It’s also just nice to sit down with your fellow actors and debrief and have a bit of a laugh.”

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