You can divide opinion on audience interaction very neatly into two categories: those who like it, and those who actively dislike it. I have always fitted very comfortably into the latter of the groups. I go to the theatre to see others performing.
Despite this strong aversion, my 2010 Fringe has so far included getting my fingers licked in the dark (Wolf, Just The Tonic), cawing like a cockatoo (Jungle Book: The Next Chapter, Guilded Balloon), singing a kid’s song about a decomposing moose (Bec Hill, Guilded Balloon) and getting married (Your Dream Wedding, Assembly). And if I’m totally honest, none of them were actually that bad.
The wedding was by far the most surreal. I was zipped into a dress (apparently the first girl to do so, all previous ‘brides’ had been men), “glided” down the aisle, another audience member did a reading and I got showered with confetti. My parents were pretty upset I had not invited them.
All this has led to a bit of a crisis of confidence. Am I now an interaction-lover? Should I start sitting in the first row of shows, raising my hand and bouncing up and down on my seat every time someone asks for volunteers?
It only took someone to tell me about Sex Idiot (Zoo Roxy) to put me firmly back in my participation-hating place. Cutting of body hair to contribute to Bryony Kimmings’ curly moustache is definitely about 17 steps too far.