Comedic one woman show comes to Gladstone
BROADWAY actress Marney McQueen travels around the world doing comedic, cabaret shows with the ultimate side-kick: her one-year-old son, Jimmy.
Marney brings the ultimate one-woman show to each town she visits, playing multiple characters including Russian beautician Rosa Waxoffski in her Hair to the Throne show.
There's more to Marney than her high quality acting skills and funny personality.
Pulse chatted to her from her Sydney home, picking her brain ahead of the show on June 14 at the Gladstone Entertainment Convention Centre.
Q. Tell us about Hair to the Throne.
A. It features my character Rosa the Russian beautician. The character came about in an exercise when I was studying in NIDA in Sydney and did a three-year course. We had to do an exercise where we observed somebody in their workplace and came back and perform as that character for 10 minutes so I decided to do my beautician. She had huge hair and was dressed top to toe in leopard print. I play a variety of different characters.
For my show in Gladstone, the first act is Rosa and in act two I will be appearing as myself. I'll go through some stories of my showbiz career and play a couple of my other characters as well. It's a one-woman variety night.
Q. What is Rosa like?
A. The character is completely obsessed with how she looks and it's a message on the pressure we put on ourselves to be well groomed.
Rosa's great fun. Things that come out of Rosa's mouth I would never dare say. Because you are playing a character people are willing to go along and enjoy it. People are more relaxed because you are signposting the fact it's all in the name of good fun. Kids quite enjoy the show because of the way Rosa talks and looks.
Q. Tell us more about the way Rosa dresses.
A. Currently there is an obsession with the way we look. It's not just women who are under this pressure to get their hair done etc. Men are now under pressure to get manscaped and get plucked. The metrosexual look has completely taken over. It's hard to tell from a man what their sexual orientation is because everyone is so well groomed. I do enjoy towns where the men have jobs that are more hands-on, like truck drivers and builders and farmers. There's lots of comedic material to come out of that.
Q. Do you have a family?
A. I just had a baby a year ago. His name is Jimmy. He has been everywhere with me. He's been touring with me since he was born. I performed until I was seven months pregnant in a one-piece Lyra. I had my first show back when he was three months old and he's tagged along since. It's just me and him. In his first year he went on 42 flights. On the whole he is pretty happy little boy. If I see him when I am fully decked out before the show, he doesn't bat an eye lid, he smiles away and it's crazy. I do think I will have some explaining to do when he grows up.
Hopefully he decides to become an accountant!
Q. Do you enjoy being a one-woman show?
A. It's pretty good. I do the makeup and hair myself. The whole idea when I created the show was that I wanted to control my own destiny as a performer. A lot of actors spend a lot of time waiting for the phone to ring. If you have something that is yours you can present it to people. It is a fantastic way for keeping up my skills as an actress. It's just about practice, like anything.
I do a lot of shows in country towns and I do really enjoy it. I have a fair bit of audience interaction in the show.
Q. Anything else?
A. I want to mention to any high school students who are interested in a career in performing arts, they would get great benefit out of the show.