An Interview With Missy

Missy is a performing artist combining gymnastics, dance and circus in her upcoming Fringe show Love, Loss and Lattes. The story follows the life of Missy and her deep love affair with coffee. We sat down with her to talk about her journey as an artist, her show and, of course, caffeinated brews.

How did you come to the decision of combining your passion for gymnastics and dance with your love of coffee in Love, Loss and Lattes?

My passion for dancing and gymnastics led me to pole dancing and aerial circus. I love using these apparatus to create stories and weave narratives in the air.

The initial spark of Love, Loss and Lattes came when I choreographed an aerial hoop routine to Peggy Lee’s Black Coffee for a show called Noir Revue about 5 years ago. I realised that coffee was a rich subject matter that many other people could relate to. There are so many aspects of our lives that revolve around coffee from catching up with friends, staying up all night to study/rehearse, first dates, etc. I then started to explore ideas relating to the ritual, habitual and social elements of my coffee consumption.

Tell us about the journey you’ve taken with performing since your first show.

The first show took place at B&B Studios in Marrickville in November, 2014. I took on the project not knowing if I could sustain a 45min show on stage by myself, let alone whether or not I could do it for three nights in a row. I absolutely loved it and it confirmed that this was the direction that I wanted to take my performing.

I then applied for Melbourne Fringe Festival. I was part of the Boardwalk Republic at the Gasworks Arts Park in September/October 2015 and during the Melbourne Fringe season I was finalising my venue contract for Adelaide Fringe.

The show is evolving with each run. I am very lucky to have had some incredible support along the way. I would’ve really struggled to get the show off the ground without the encouragement and creative facilitation of Marissa Yeo and Emma Goh. Recently I have been working with the amazing performer and director, Emma Serjeant. I am really excited about showing the current incarnation of Love, Loss and Lattes in Adelaide.

In some ways, it seems like coffee is to you what spinach is to Popeye: your superfood. Are there times when coffee acts as your kryptonite too?

I think I learnt pretty early on about caffeine shakes. I’m pretty good at curbing my coffee intake to prevent it from happening.

In some places in Europe it is traditional to have a shot of alcohol with one’s morning coffee before going to work. How do you feel about this?

I’m not much of a drinker. On the rare occasion when I do drink, it tends to make me quite sleepy. I think if I had a shot of alcohol with my morning coffee the effects of the alcohol and caffeine would cancel each other out.

What kind of coffee would you compare your show to? Why?

I would love to think that the show provides comparison to the whole gamut of coffee-related beverages. There are some parts that are like a heart-starting espresso, others that are warm and comforting like a smooth latte and everything else in between.

What are you looking forward to most about the Fringe?

Incredible artists from all over the world convene in Adelaide for Fringe to showcase their work. I am looking forward to contributing a small fragment to that creative energy.

And finally, do you take milk and sugar?

Milk, yes. Sugar, no. I am quite particular about my milk to coffee ratio though. I like my coffee to be strong – not just flavoured milk.

Read more about Love, Loss and Lattes and buy tickets here.

Words by Jordan Leovic

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