Interview: Beth Vyse at the Soho Theatre

Beth Vyse

Beth Vyse is a long time favourite of ours and a prominent member of the Weirdos collective. She takes her Show “Up With Hands” to the Soho Theatre for two nights only. As with all of her work, once you have seen it you can’t forget it. 

Hi Beth, how are you?

Good, feeling a bit manic at the moment, I need a dog, but I’m good. I have decided to answer these questions in quotes about me past shows like the true wanker I am. It will make no sense.

I think the simplest description I could give of your act is character comedy, but that doesn’t really do much to describe it. How would you explain it?

“Vyse’s show is a wonderful melange of surreal and character comedy styles that basks in the campy fun of daytime telly. ” Broadway Baby
“Stunningly Lewd” Three Weeks

“No, that still doesn’t capture the intensity of this, both in absurdism and in performance. Vyse throws herself into the role – and, literally, into the audience – with a terrifying commitment to a character falling apart so explosively. Wigs come flying off, props get broken, wardrobes malfunction all in the maelstrom of madness. And the finale… well, you won’t see anything like this hilariously appalling image on Live At The Apollo.” Chortle

“Get up with Hands!” was your 2014 edinburgh show, how did the run go?

“This is really a vehicle for Vyse’s talents, an extraordinary performance of high-octane hysteria throughout. How does she keep it up?” Fest

“As the show finishes the relief from the audience is palpable, but intelligent work doesn’t always have to feel good.” Three Weeks

The show revolves around Olive Hands, who seems to be a Loose Women panellist from hell. Where there many real life inspirations for her?

“Staunchly in the vein of funnywoman Karen Taylor’s Valerie D’Enton, Vyse’s show tells the tale of Olive Hands – a kind of leopard print-clad Corrie-kitsch Cruella de Vil – and her mad scramble to save her ITV9 daytime telly show. It’s a campy curveball of surreal comic delight.” Broadway Baby

“Les Dawson as the Angel of the North” Chortle

“Jane MacDonald (SIC)” Three Weeks

“Beth Vyse’s creation is teetering on the very edge of sanity and is desperate for fame at any cost, recruiting audience members for moral support and speaking parts as her show crashes down around her ears.” Three Weeks

Do you watch a lot of morning television? What are your particular favourites?

“Marvelous” The Times

Will Ali Brice be turning up in the show? He’s a scamp.

“It’s certainly the first show I’ve seen when the performer might be upstaged by a vibrator…” Chortle

Olive Hands and Jeremy Kyle are the only to survivors of a plane crash in the mountains (a bit like the film Alive!), what happens?

“A truly immersive and not unenjoyable experience, at times it’s like being trapped in a surreal nightmare; the shrieking, leg humping, and throwing of oddball props creating a sensory overload that’s almost too much to bear.” Three Weeks

(This means we’d have intercourse)

Beth Vyse: Get Up With Hands
Monday 11th May and Tuesday 12th May
Soho Theatre

Categories: Interviews

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