On the Couch with Ella Prince

AAR Ella Prince courtesy of Bell Shakespeare CompanyWho is Ella Prince?
Ella Prince is an actor / master of none. I have been brought up by some pretty amazing people, who in their own ways, and despite their own struggles, taught me something about gratitude and where to find joy.

What would you do differently from what you do now?
I think of death constantly. I’ve lost a lot of people. I would like to pay better attention to the things that really matter. Be more present, fear less, worry less, and be more honest with myself. And write more. Dance more. And remember better: forgetting can be useful, but it is more often disappointing.

Who inspires you and why?
Poets, and musicians. People like Kae Tempest and Tracy Chapman and Maggie Nelson and Patti Smith and Eileen Myles and Leonard Cohen and Maya Angelou. Because they tell love and sorrow and triumph through sound, and with their magic, transcendent jumbling of words.

I’m also thinking a lot about my uncle Robin, who shares a name with Puck or Robin Goodfellow. He had an atypical mind and he inspired me to express and feel and see differently.

What would you do to make a difference in the world?
Invest in a mini digger. Do some cheeky night sowing of native trees on streets where there are none.

Favourite holiday destination and why?
Are you offering? Take me somewhere nature is still in charge. Somewhere with snow, or sand, or redwoods. But don’t fly me there – make me walk or hitch a boat. Aeroplanes are ridiculous and scary.

When friends come to town, what attraction would you take them to, and why?
I’d take them to the beach on a weekday. Or a national park. Because this country is insanely beautiful.

What are you currently reading?
I am reading the first pages of Paul Takes the Form of a Mortal Girl, gifted to me by Ziggy Resnick. But I’m a terrible reader of novels. I like plays, because they read at the speed of life. And poems, because they read you.

What are you currently listening to?
Today: Max Richter, Maggie Rogers, Boygenius, Justin Bieber, Redcar and the Handsome Pod.

Happiness is?
Friendship. Stillness. Things that grow. A view of nature or the mind. Being known and unknown. Forgiveness. The sea. Spending time with Alex King. And running with whippets.

What does the future hold for you?
I hope more making of plays and friends.

Ella stars as Puck in Bell Shakespeare’s production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream – which will be presented at the Sydney Opera House (2 – 30 March), Bunbury Entertainment Centre (9 April), Arts Centre Melbourne (25 April – 11 May) and Canberra Theatre Centre (7 – 15 June). For more information, visit: www.bellshakespeare.com.au for details.

Image: Ella Prince – courtesy of Bell Shakespeare