Softly, Surely Actress Claudia Shnier Talks Music, Life and Theatre

My fourth Fringe Interview is Claudia Shnier, an actor and producer who is starring in Subtlenuance’s Softly, Surely at Flight Path Theatre this week. We got together to chat about the relationship between music, life and art.

Please note, this interview has been condensed and edited for clarity.

Tell me about Softly, Surely.

It’s about the relationship between life and music. It’s about how life moves forward, just like music does. And it’s about how a song doesn’t exist without the notes that come before it

And no one listens to a song waiting for it to end, and that’s kind of like life.

Why should people come see the show?

My director describes it as a “little gem”. I think it’s quite beautiful. It’s relatable, it’s really sweet and moving.

It’s a nice reminder about how people’s lives intertwine. It’s done in a really special way with all the music, and the singing is beautiful. It’s acoustic, we all sing the music ourselves, there’s no instruments or anything.

Who do you think is the ideal audience for this show?

Is it a cop out if I say everybody?

No! It’s a shrewd marketing move to not cut anyone out. (Laughs)

My boyfriend’s friends came yesterday and they, they really liked it.

I think my character relates mainly to women because she’s getting a pap smear done and that’s an issue that affects women, or I should say, people with vaginas.

So, these older women came up to me and they really enjoyed it. And they said they got really teary.

And there was a little baby in the audience last night as well!

Was that cute or really distracting?

A little distracting (Laughs).

What has been your favourite part of working on this show?

I really liked the rehearsal process with Paul (Director and Co-Writer). He went through the script first and we were sitting down and for the first couple sessions. We didn’t get up on the floor straight away and I really like to work like that.

That’s how I like to work too! I love script analysis, to the point where I get bogged down in it and I’m like “Ugh we should really get on the floor”. (Laughs).

I know! And it freaks me out to be like “Okay, First rehearsal, let’s give it a go”.

So, I really liked doing it like that instead.

Has this show been performed before?

No.

And are there plans to perform again?

I don’t think so. Subtlenuance’s whole motto is “Here’s a piece of theatre, take what you will, and move on” and whoever gets to see it, gets to see it.

Subtlenuance’s Softly, Surely is playing at Flight Path Theatre for Fringe Week 2. More information about Subtlenuance can be found here.

Interview conducted and edited by Jo Bradley.

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