Mon. May 27th, 2024

Sophie Kisilevsky discusses her show Tracks

Many of us will appreciate the joy of music and how some songs can bring such vivid memories to life for us. And that is very much what Sophie Kisilevsky‘s Tracks aims to do when it plays for one night only on 24 August at Hen and Chickens Theatre for Camden Fringe. Although we’re sure this is one night for now, and the show will be back again before too long.

In the meantime, we thought we’d grab some (turn)table time with Sophie to talk about the show and why it is so personal for her.

Can you tell us about the inspiration behind ‘Tracks?

I started writing Tracks whilst being a member of the SOHO Writer’s Lab. Tracks was inspired by an urge to combine storytelling and music to create a visceral, sensory and nostalgic experience for the audience.

What makes your character Claire choose to forego the youthful celebrations to isolate herself and reminisce on her birthday?

Tracks has a painful memory buried deep at its core, which Claire has been unable to confront…until now, in the attic, surrounded by memories on her 30th birthday. 

What’s in the box of records in the Attic? Are they from her teenage years or are they family treasures?

The records make up a lifelong collection of albums owned by Claire’s mum, going all the way back to her teenage years. Claire has fond memories of growing up listening to them.

We understand there is a personal significance to the play, would you be comfortable sharing this with us?

I lost my mum suddenly in 2011, and nothing can prepare you for the grief that hits you following such a loss. There were times following Mum’s passing when I wondered whether I could ever be able to enjoy my passions again, music being a big one of these. It just felt impossible and too painful. However, it was upon receiving a box of my mum’s records from when she was growing up that there was a shift in my healing. 

What is the intended message for the audience and any twenty something’s approaching this milestone?

Just as the end of the play marks the beginning of Claire’s healing process, it also encourages the audience to look at their own lives and moments of joy, pain or sadness. I hope to instill them with a message of hope that things, in time, will be ok. Put on that song, wack up that speaker, and that person you miss, that period in your life you wish to visit just one more time, the dream you have for your future years, will reignite, in glorious technicolour. 

How critical was humour to this play and audience engagement? 

Very critical. Even though Claire is hurting, it was very important to me that the play was full of light and joy to celebrate who Mum was. She had the best laugh and a real wicked sense of humour, so I knew I wanted this to be carried throughout the play. Grief is not a fixed track of emotions. It is full of twists, turns, ups, downs, tears, and even laughter. I wanted Claire’s journey in the play to emulate this in a truthful and relatable way. 

How do you see your work fitting into the larger theatrical landscape, both locally and globally?

Grief is universal and something we will all experience one day. Therefore I would hope Claire’s story has the potential to reach wider audiences in the theatrical landscape. I have found that death and grief are often presented as taboo subjects in theatre. They can be very awkward and sensitive areas that leave us unsure of how to begin a conversation about them. ‘Tracks’ seeks to start these conversations. 

Our thanks to Sophie for giving up some of her time to chat with us.

Tracks plays at Hen and Chickens Theatre for one night only as part of Camden Fringe. Further information and tickets can be found here.

By Sandra Winters

Writer | Author | Wordsmith Passionate about crafting stories that captivate and inspire. Published author of [Book Title]. Dedicated to exploring the depths of human emotions and experiences through the power of words. Join me on this literary journey as we delve into the realms of imagination and uncover the beauty of storytelling.