The Literature and Drama Society’s (LADS) One Act Play Festival (OAPF) is back again this year with more awesome plays to watch. We sat down with some of the cast members who will be acting in different one-act plays to ask them their opinion of their roles, how they feel about acting them out and other questions that can help get to know them better.
Kaiven, a 2nd year student, has had experience acting since his foundation year. He plays the role of Chitra Gupta in the play called Waiting for Yamma.
IGNITE: Tell us about your character.
KAIVEN: My character’s name is Chitra Gupta. He is an Indian God and I’m definitely not an Indian God but I believe, that is one of the beautiful things about plays. Plays are like a collaboration between the actor and the audience. The actor acts, and the audience believes that the actor is the character they’re playing and I think trying your best to portray that character is one of the nice things about acting.
I: What is your favourite part about playing this character?
K: My favourite thing about this character is that I normally don’t portray weird characters. All my characters so far were pretty normal. I guess, my favourite part of playing him is that the way he speaks is definitely not very human and it gives me a way to portray him like I’ve never done before. I’ve never played a character like him before and that’s why I kinda like it.
I: What’s the biggest challenge you faced while playing this role?
K: Definitely the lines. There are so many lines and I‘m not very good with lines. Usually, my lines are short but this time, they’re really long so it’s definitely been a challenge to memorize them all. But, you know, if you don’t challenge yourself, you don’t grow.
I: What’s your favourite line of dialogue?
K: “They will boil you in a big seething pot of oil”
I: What do you think makes a good scene partner?
K: Building rapport and chemistry through rehearsals and the acting that you perform together. If you’re already friends, for example, you know what that person is like and it helps if you guys have fun together.
Hamidah Abdul Rahman
Next, we interviewed Hamidah who is in charge of OAPF this year. She is also playing a character in one of the plays. She plays the role of Anya in the play Waiting for Yamma.
IGNITE: Can you tell us a little bit about your character?
HAMIDAH: She’s very sassy and strong character. She’s very dismissive too. There’s a lot of layers to her that will unravel during the play.
I: What’s your favourite part in portraying this character?
H: I think she’s very passionate about humanity and love. It’s quite an epic tale I would say. There’s something to be liked about how she’s very committed to her decisions.
I: What’s the biggest challenge in playing your character?
H: There are so many layers to her. She says one thing but means another, there’s always a hidden meaning in what she says. She’s the hardest character I’ve ever played just because it’s like she’s not human.
I: Is it easier to be yourself on stage or to play characters?
H: Well, I really hate public speaking so I always think it’s a bit hard for me to be myself on stage. It’s much easier for me to act as someone else just because it’s like putting on another layer. So if I mess up, it’s not me, it’s the character.
I: What’s your favourite line of dialogue?
H: “Yeah bro, true love”
I: Lastly, if you could play any other character on this show, who would it be and why?
H: Honestly I wouldn’t choose any other character. I like Anya and during my auditions, I also auditioned for her role. She’s just really interesting.
Lastly, we sat down with Zahra who’s having her first acting experience. She is playing the role of the mugger in Here in Spirit and also the role of Marine in the Tests of Young Men play.
IGNITE: Tell us about your characters.
ZAHRA: In Here in Spirit, my character is a bit rough on the outside but she’s soft on the inside and she lowkey misses her friend who had passed away. In Tests of Young Men, I play a villain who’s not exactly a human being.
I: What’s your favourite part about playing them?
Z: I would say it’s the fact that they’re different from myself. I have to step out of my comfort zone and try to build up a character based on what I think it is. My favourite part would be the fact that I am able to experiment with this new persona and that I have to embody something I am not.
I: What’s the hardest part about playing them?
Z: For me, it’s getting into character and maintaining it throughout the whole play. Sometimes, I laugh on stage and I go back to being myself so then, I have to go back to being this character. I have to give the illusion that I am someone else.
I: Since this is your first time acting, how do you feel?
Z: It’s exciting and interesting. I get to meet many new people and I’m learning new things. It’s, in a way, a challenge for myself because before this, I was too afraid to act and I was too worried that I won’t be able to do it but now I’m here so, I guess sometimes, you just have to go the extra mile and push yourself.
I: Would you be interested in joining OAPF again in the future?
Z: Yeah, definitely. It’s a good experience and I love meeting new people. It’s just like having a diverse group of friends, you get different perspectives because you and others have to act and become different people so it’s interesting.
OAPF will take place on the 11th and 12th of March. Grab your tickets while they last, to personally watch how these amazing actors and actresses portray their characters on stage!
Written by Hinda Mohamed Hassan and Salma Tamer