On the Couch with Andi Snelling

Andi Snelling oncWho is Andi Snelling?
Definitely not Andi Smelling, as some childhood certificates of mine would suggest. Andi Snelling is an actor who I know rather well.

What would you do differently to what you do now?
Worry less…. On a career front, I grew up wanting to be a journalist and used to film myself in my backyard “reporting” on the big issues – “This is Andrea Snelling, reporting live from Alaska where the Exxon-Valdez oil spill has just devastated the area.” (Cue my friends throwing bits of white paper in front of a fan to create snow). I remember that being a big story which I ‘broke’ at the tender age of 13 or so. So perhaps I would be a journo if I weren’t an actor. But really, there’s nothing else I’d rather be doing than acting right now.

Who inspires you and why?
My Mum. She’s the kind of 65 year-old who skydives, travels round in her motorhome, will just randomly do the splits in the kitchen, decides to get a Bus Licence for fun, and just generally has a better social life than me! She is the epitome of get out there and GO FOR IT!

What would you do to make a difference in the world?
Share my truth. It’s all I know.

Favourite holiday destination and why?
Berlin. I lived there for three exhilarating years and accidentally left a chunk of my heart there. Must go back and get it again some day.

When friends come to town, what attraction would you take then to, and why?
Melbourne’s Laneways. I absolutely love taking visitors through the myriad of paint-splashed laneways that wiggle and wind through the CBD. I’ve seen a lot of the world and I’ve never quite seen a laneway network like Melbourne’s. It’s very unique. Plus, every time I do it, I discover a new bar with no sign out the front to add to my list of quirky Melbourne hangouts.

What are you currently reading?
Lots of bits and pieces at once, as I always do. I’m reading Virginia Woolf and Vanessa Bell: A Very Close Conspiracy which is research for a Radio Play I’m co-writing. I’m also reading about the Grand Guignol as research for Quills which I’m rehearsing with Mockingbird Theatre. This is particularly special for me since I did a year of high school in Lyon, the home of Guignol, which fascinated me as a 15 year-old. I’ve also spent a lot of time recently reading my entire collection of diaries, which I’ve been writing since I was 12. Yep. 20 years of my ego on paper!

What are you currently listening to?
The ding-ding-ding of the railway crossing down the road. It has a joyous rhythm to it… Actually, the other day I was listening to ABC Classic FM (yes, I have tender tastes) and they were playing a sassy jazz version of The Teddy Bears’ Picnic! It certainly made me want to go into the woods!

Happiness is?
What comes when I allow it. It’s totally also Hefeweizen beer, wearing bright colours, discovering a new pun, recognising humanity in a stranger, improvising on stage with my ridiculously talented buddies at The Big Hoo-Haa, drinking tea, and surprising myself.

What does the future hold for you?
The future promises to constantly be there for me. I love how the moment you stop and think about the future, you are already in it. It’s magic. I am so excited about my future because there is a lot in the pipelines. I like my pipelines being full. I feel myself getting more and more into comedy. I love Clown/Bouffon work. I love slapstick. Perhaps I’ll do more Physical Theatre. I must be due for another one-woman show again. I used to work as a translator so maybe I’ll dabble in that again on the side. There are so many TV shows I want to be a part of. So many films yet to be made. And endless stories to tell. I suppose I’ll die one day, but until then, there are endless possibilities.

Andi Snelling trained at the prestigious Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts in London and performed across stages in Europe for seven years. Career highlights include: Edith in Picnic at Hanging Rock (BBC), Ensemble in Crazy for You (London Palladium), Ellie in Gleisdreieck (Cannes Film Festival), Dostoyana in Bullet: A Superhero Comedy (Melbourne Comedy Festival), Odysseus/Maid in The Penelopiad (Stork Theatre) and Inflight Voice for Qatar Airways.

Andi grew up dancing at national level and her diverse range of skills also includes puppetry, mime and improvised comedy, which she performs regularly with The Big Hoo-Haa Melbourn. She will be appearing in Mockingbird Theatre’s Quills at the Arts House Meat Market in North Melbourne from 2 – 15 August. For more information, visit: www.mockingbirdtheatre.com.au for details.

Image: Andi Snelling