As Brighton Fringe gears up for 2016, Broadway Baby offers an insight into the shows, the people and the world that is Brighton Fringe. We’ve been speaking to participants from around the Fringe and asked them to give us an insight into their shows.
It's a coming of age story that is at times touching, sweet & funny and at others dark & shocking
Name Alex Packer
Tell us a bit about yourself
I'm an actor and director currently working on The Woman in Black in the West End. I created Mini Mall theatre company and we premiered our first show, Tiny Tempest, at the Brighton Fringe in 2013. I've written and am co-directing Ballistic with Anna Marsland.
Can you tell us a little bit about your show, what can we expect?
Ballistic is inspired by Elliot Rodger's manifesto. He was a troubled young man who committed a mass shooting in Isla Vista in California in 2014. Before he died he wrote a 100,000 word manifesto entitled 'My Twisted World'. I took this as inspiration and wrote a play based around it. It's a coming of age story that is at times touching, sweet & funny and at others dark & shocking.
Why did you decide to perform your show at the Brighton Fringe?
I'm based in Sussex and have worked on shows in Brighton for many years. The subject matter is controversial and challenging and I know a Brighton Fringe audience will really engage with the subject matter.
What makes your show different?
It's a one-man show about a troubled individual yet there is a surprising amount of humour and sweetness in the story. Even the most troubled individuals are human, wanting the same things as everyone else. I'm interested in how an audience will respond to a vulnerable young man retelling his life story in such an honest way.
Who would enjoy seeing your show?
Anyone aged 16+ wanting to hear the remarkable story of a loner. Everyone knows loneliness. Everyone can empathise with that feeling of being lost, bullied and struggling to find their worth in our chaotic society.
What has been the best advice you have been given?
‘Make good art’. It's a quote from a speech given by the author Neil Gaiman. Watch it on YouTube. Essentially, he says despite all the impossibilities artists face today, just make good art. Nothing else is as important as that.
What show, apart from yours, would you recommend at the Brighton Fringe and why?
Don't miss Bane at The Warren. Such skill and craft by Joe Bone. It's really exciting storytelling.
What do you think audiences will enjoy the most about your show?
Mark Conway, who performs Ballistic, is such a brilliant performer. He creates all the incredible complexities of the character and is so playful with an audience. We've developed the show together over the last 6 months and he's taken real ownership of the story and character in a way that few actors could. I can't wait for an audience to watch him tell this story.
Ballistic is appearing at Distrikt, 29 - 30 May, 19:00