Although her religion, family, and country would prefer her to be straight, Fiona Goodwin has other preferences that involve rescuing pretty maidens. Forgive me, father, for I have sinned. Despite religious exorcisms, a lifetime of Jungian analysis, and dating countless beautiful but unavailable women and one very available but sweaty man, Ms Goodwin is and always will be A Very British Lesbian. Here in Edinburgh at the Fringe this August, Fiona spoke with The Fountain about her show.
TF: You are performing at the Edinburgh Fringe this year, how exciting?
I’m thrilled to be performing at the Edinburgh Fringe – it’s such a prestigious event – ever since I came 5years ago as an audience member, I have wanted to perform here. I especially look forward to enjoying the work of other artists from all over the world.
TF: A Very British Lesbian certainly sounds intriguing, what is the premise?
This is the story of one woman’s quest to be straight at all costs. Despite religious exorcisms, a lifetime of jungian analysis, dating countless beautiful but unavailable women and one very available but sweaty man, she reluctantly come to the conclusion that she is incorrigibly gay. Her Britishness keeps her firmly in the closet until she can stand it no longer. The themes are universal: finding your voice, finding self-acceptance, and finding the courage to be yourself at all costs.
TF: And what drove the project, where did your influences lie?
I had been doing standup for a number of years then one night at home in Los Angeles, I watched the news of the massacre at Pulse, the gay nightclub in Orlando. People had simply been dancing and they lost their lives. They were my biggest influence – I had been muted till then. I had to speak up. I felt rage at the homophobia, especially my own. As for comedy heroes: Victoria Wood, I miss her! French and Saunders, Julie Walters, Eddie Izzard and here in America Sarah Silverman and Paula Poundstone are geniuses.
TF: Have you been to the Fringe before, is there anything you are keen to see whilst in Edinburgh?
It is my first time at the Fringe as a performer. I have 26 shows and I’m not 21 anymore! My plan is to eat spinach and stay upright! I’ve heard that a certain amount of stamina is helpful! I also can’t wait to drink tea and eat cake and black pudding. I will be so happy touch old walls and look up at the spires and turrets…living in America I have been starved of architecture with history.
TF: And what are your future plans beyond A Very British Lesbian?
I’m finishing the book looking forward to continuing to tour the show in Europe and the US…. and open to whatever else shows up!
Fiona Goodwin performs A Very British Lesbian at The Gilded Ballon Teviot Sportsmans from July 31 to August 26 at 13.45