We all know the Burlesque Underground and the Seven Families, but who are the people behind the notorious characters we love to hate and hate to love?
Blacklight brings you a series of exclusive one-on-one interviews with the cast and crew of the Adult Playground.
Let the Games Begin!
Name: Pippy Scream
Which character/s do you play in the Underground? Bethany Belladonna Black, daughter of Jasper Black and Betty Dream Black.
What other jobs/responsibilities do you have during a Funday? Performing, when I can.
How did creation of this character come about? ‘Mommie Dearest’ was the first act I performed at Underground, which soon became a regular favourite. I remember the first discussion about Underground and Family between Natty (Jasper), Bec (Betty), Bella, Raven (Jett) & myself. We discussed what characters we would play and because I played the baby in that routine it was decided I would be Betty’s 8 year old child. The specifics of Bethy all came about through improv each week at the Underground – the Science Teacher and the “banana” that he would make young Bethy rub for a sticky surprise, the obsession with her Uncle J, and her English Teacher Mr Nick were all very organic in their development. As time passed it became difficult to roleplay after shows when everyone else was ‘grown up,’ so I decided post-show I would be an older version, who called herself Bethany. And the rest is history.
What’s your favourite Underground memory involving your character? Definitely the first time Natty and I performed “Bourbon and Valium.” I remember the air being filled with tension…it was just horrifically magical and a big moment in the relationship and development of those characters.
What do you do to help you get ‘in the vibe’ on a Funday? As Bethany has a specific style and I don’t wear her dresses in real life, once I’m dressed it’s pretty easy to get into her head space. Listening to Lana Del Rey also helps, her music is moody, sexy, youthful, and tough.
If you could play one other character, which one would it be? Bella. She is so opposite to Bethany- poised, in control, untouchable and classy.
What’s your funniest Underground moment? A group of us (Bella, Red, Betty, Bethany and Raoul) singing “You Don’t Own Me” to Baelian/Jasper. Also, the fight between Bella and Bethany that night at the wedding party. And the maniacal laughter between Bethany and Nikolai during the last Christmas party. Also, anything Betty says is hilarious.
What moment in the Underground has upset/disturbed you most? Belladonna telling Bethany that she could hear Baelian crying inside her head and it was Bethany’s fault.
What’s your favourite onstage act? Bella De Jac’s lace fans.
Go-to song for your character? Gods & Monsters, Lana Del Rey
Favourite quote from your character? “Blah blah blah.”
What’s been the most difficult thing for you to do/overcome with your character and how did you over come it? When she does or says things that go against my personal morals and ethics. I have to remind myself that I am very clear in who I am and that it’s okay to portray things that I would hate to be reflected in reality.
What can we expect from your character over the next 6 months? Drama. Growth. You can expect that it will always be one step forwards two steps back with Bethany. She has been through some tough times and will either rise to be stronger and colder or fall back into that smooth, white pit of sweet cocaine. Who can say? Who can say…
The Burlesque Underground plays bi-monthly in Melbourne. For event info visit: https://www.facebook.com/burlesqueunderground/
All characters and story lines remain the property of N.Ristovski and the Underground. All character writings within the Underground are fictitious. Any resemblance to persons living or dead is purely coincidental. Copyright © 2015. Natalie Ristovski.