The Culture Interview – Sue Frumin, performer, writer

Oh Lordy, 68 year old Sue Frumin is eclectic! She’s a writer, performer, teacher, stand-up comedian and presenter. She’s fabulously funny, has appeared in five one woman shows and much more. Her avant-garde cabaret ‘At Home with The Ludskis’ is often to be seen at the Rio Cinema in Dalston, London. This Saturday, March 4th, sees Sue co-organising an Andy Warhol Factory party at Vout-O-Renees… More info below.

What was it that first made you want to start performing?
I was a very quiet child and no-one noticed I was there.  I had a dream one night when I was about 7 that I would be an actress. It has blighted my life ever since because I felt it was a prophecy.  I decided I would work to make this dream a reality without realising that I had to have the confidence to perform which includes speaking in public. It also includes things like dancing and singing which a lot of people do better than me.

What has been the highlight of your career to date?
When Mike Leigh picked me out of a crowd of extras for a feature in “Another Year”.  He chose me because I looked so grumpy.

the-country-and-western-partyDid you ever want to be a movie star ? If so who would you align yourself too a) Marilyn Monroe b) Meryl Streep c) Holly Woodlawn or d) Ultra Violet?
I only wanted to be a “movie star” after I’d been an “extra” for a bit and I noticed that they got far better food than we did. They also get treated with respect. If I could align myself to anyone it would be Meryl Streep because she’s so versatile and also incredibly warm as a person. I worked with her in “Florence Foster Jenkins”  and  “Iron Lady”.  She’s the best.

Is age a barrier? 
Age isn’t a barrier to anything unless you let it be. I’m happier now than I have ever been. I have more confidence now and I don’t care if people like me or not. The problem is the physical stuff like eyesight and physical flexibility.

What makes you want to get out of bed in the morning?
I have a cat who ‘meeows’ in my earhole and pulls at my hair and bashes me in the face with her paw.  It is so annoying that I have to get up to get away from her.

Who is the funniest performer around, bar yourself?
Rachel Mars – she is young and brilliant.  I love her shows.  She’s very quirky and has great theatrical ideas.

Would you ever perform with your twin? Can she also play the musical saw?
We have performed together.  She was “Gonzalo” in The Tempest which we performed at the Skala Eressos Women’s festival last year.  I was going to play Gonzalo but she’s so much nicer than me that I decided she would have the part of the “nice guy” and I would play Antonio, “the villain”.

She decided to take up the violin when she retired at 60. She’s pretty good at it and it sounds okay. I don’t think we’ll ever perform together though as we bicker too much.

Do you see retirement as an option or a luxury?
I see retirement as an opportunity to do the things you want to do and I have been doing that for the last seven years.  This has included performing at The Arcola, creating events,  producing The Tempest, completing a screenwriting course at Birkbeck, performing at “Duckie” and not doing jobs that I don’t want to do anymore like teaching and gardening.  It also includes a Freedom Pass which is worth it’s weight in gold.

If you could re-make a film with you as the lead, what would it be?

That is the hardest question I have ever had to answer. In fact, I really can’t answer it because I would have to remember all the films I like and they tend to be German Expressionist ones or silent films – I really have to think about an answer and if I come up with one I’ll send it to you.

What is it about Andy Warhol’s Factory that inspired you to re-create it at Vout-O-Reenees on Saturday 4th March?

I loved the songs from The Velvet Underground and Nico and also think the whole concept of having many artistic things going on at the same time should be exciting. There will be lots of surprises and a variety of entertainment.  Everyone, whether a punter or performer should feel involved. Vout-O-Renees is such a wonderful space and the people who go there seem very chilled. It’s the perfect place for a multi-media event based on The Factory.

Sue Frumin along with Emily Howard are putting on All Tomorrows Parties for one night only at Vout-O- Renees  which will be a fabulous reconstruction of Andy Warhol’s Factory. Films, electric happenings, music and guest appearances by Andy Warhol, Candy Darling, Valerie Solanas and a host of ghosts from the Exploding Plastic Inevitable. A chance to paint your own works of art, write your own poetry in The Creation Lounge, dance and sing in the gallery or just watch the extraordinary happenings.

Tickets: £5 in advance/ £7 on the door

Featuring Performances by:

– Dalston Ballet Company
– Samuel R
– Marianne Hyatt
– Nico Milk
– Pasha Valentine
– Sue Loder
– Ranulph Redlin
– Tasmine Airey
– Claud Palazzo
And many others!

Dress Code: Andy Warhol or Warhol Superstar the Dalston Ballet

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