Melody Parker is the first actress to be featured on TYC. She does more than tread the boards though. As well as being a self-diagnosed X-Files nerd (‘Mulder and Scully are like old friends to me’), Melody is currently learning to play the guitar and she is also a frequent visitor to the numerous vintage markets in London.
She is also currently busy transforming her garden into ‘a little paradise’, and she drinks too much coffee, a trait which she blames on her Swedish upbringing. Oh, and she has a cat who she named Baptiste after a character in one of her favourite films, Les Enfants du Paradis. Intrigued? Us too…
Tell us a bit about yourself…
My name is Melody Parker and I’m an actress, playwright and a visual artist. I was born and raised in Stockholm, Sweden, which is where I trained as an actress. I also spent a year in Sydney, Australia. I am 24 years of age and have been performing and devising theatre for the last 10 years. I started writing about a year ago and my first play – Healing London – was performed by L’Ouverture at Goldsmith’s University in August last year. I’m currently writing a new play called Princess that’s based on the true story of a bride who was abandoned by the groom and was so traumatized that she went into a kind of psychosis. She refused to let anyone touch the wedding feast so it was left to rot for years in her house, where she was to remain in until she died many years later. Charles Dickens describes a similar scenario of Miss Havisham in Great Expectations. It is a very extreme example of how love can make a human being so delusional they ruin their whole lives or kill themselves. It is also a journey into the darker sides of a human beings consciousness and the tricks we play on ourselves in order to sustain an illusion of happiness.
I am also a founding member of the Perennial Theatre Company with which I performed our devised piece The Show of the Night at Latitude and Camden Fringe festivals in 2010.
What inspires you?
I get inspiration from seeing brave performances from theatre companies such as Belarus Free Theatre, Toneelgroepen, Le cirques invisibles, and Steppenwolf, watching movies by Jean Cocteau, David Lynch, Marcel Carné, Charlie Chaplin, Ingmar Bergman, and Roman Polanski, reading Charles Baudelaire, Virginia Woolf, August Strindberg, Shakespeare, Anton Chekhov, Leo Tolstoy and Sarah Kane, listening to music by Nino Rota, Clint Mansell, Johnny Cash, Björk, Traditional Folkmusic and much more. But above all my inspiration comes from life itself – observing all the magic that exists around us every day.
What is your favourite piece of work you have produced?
My favorite work I’ve ever done is when I played Strophe in Sarah Kane’s Phaedra’s Love at the Wharf Theatre in Sydney, Australia in 2008. It was an amazing role, amazing creative team and I’ve never enjoyed performing so much as I did then.
Who is your favourite creative in your chosen field?
My all time creative hero is Michael Chekhov – his vision of an Ideal Theatre of the Future in which Theatre , in addition of being entertaining would be the major influence of bringing positive, healing enlightenment to our entire world culture – is something I too strive for. Other heroes include: The Chaplin family, Isadora Duncan, Ingrid Bergman, Cate Blanchett, Gillian Anderson, Harriet Andersson, Audrey Hepburn, Marlon Brando, Natalie Portman, Margot Fonteyn and Lauren Bacall.