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EDINBURGH 2014 - BWW INTERVIEWS: Writer And Comedian Lizzy Mace

Comedy writer and actress Lizzy Mace speaks to BWW:UK about her second solo show "Overlooked" at the Edinburgh Fringe festival.

What can people expect from "Overlooked"?

"Overlooked" contains a series of slightly bonkers characters who all feel undervalued, ignored or overlooked in some way. There's a range from the more surreal, such as the fourth bear from the Goldilocks story and a sketch featuring three fruit arguing about which of them is most overlooked, to the more realistic including the girl left holding the coats at the end of the night and a reluctant internet dater. And as it's all performed by me, you can expect some dodgy costume choices and accents.

You performed Overlooked at Adelaide fringe and Brighton fringe, how did that go?

I got some great reviews from both Fringes, with Adelaide Theatre Guide saying, "You will surely be gasping with laughter", and Gscene in Brighton, "Charming, understated and funny, Mace sneaks up on us unawares and moves us from pity to hilarity in one swift ruthlessly observed remark."

I still have some of the people who saw the show in Adelaide in March quoting lines back at me. It's great to think that the characters I've created have made such an impression on people, and still make them laugh even months later!

You're also performing a second show in Edinburgh, "The Cleek". How did that come about?

"The Cleek" is a group show, part-sketch and part-improv, with a fast-paced ever-changing format that means it will be different every day. It really came out of the same place as Overlooked. I took a break from Edinburgh Fringe last year, having performed there the previous three years running, deciding to spend six weeks studying improvisation and sketch writing at the Second City Training Center in Chicago instead. Overlooked is based on a theme which came out of some solo performance classes I took in the final week, while The Cleek is made up of people I spent the first four weeks studying alongside. We've got members from across the world, including Australia, Venezuela, the US and UK. We're putting the show together remotely, sharing sketches online and holding rehearsals via Skype! Everything I'm doing in Edinburgh this year has come out of the ideas I had, the skills I developed and the people I met in Chicago a year ago.

What are your top edfringe recommendations?

In general, see as much as you can! And especially see things that you wouldn't normally see - the unknowns, the free shows, the random ones people recommend to you in queues. Never plan too much; always leave time in the schedule to be spontaneous.

As for specific recommendations, there are loads of great sketch groups I always look forward to seeing: Casual Violence, The Beta Males, WitTank. The Boom Jennies are normally excellent, and though they're not there as a group this year two of them are performing solo - Anna Emerson and Lizzie Bates - so I'll be checking their shows out. I always enjoy Sam Simmons' brand of surrealism, Juliette Burton's docu-comedies and for stand-up, Felicity Ward, Carl Donnelly and Paco Erhard are some of my top picks. There are just so many!

Overlooked is part of the La Favorita Freestival and runs from August 1st-25th (not Tuesdays).



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