Saturday, 5 April 2014

Interview // The Lemon Collective

The Lemon Collective, or TLC as they are otherwise abbreviated to, invaded the Lantern Theatre as part of the final day's fun of Threshold for 2014. Helen Basil caught up with them and, in her words, poked at their brains...

HB: So, I’ve personally had the pleasure of knowing about you guys for a while now but, for the uninitiated, sum yourselves up in a few words.

TLC: Obscure, slap-dash, artistic variety lemon shows.

HB: Who is Lemon Head and how did he end up being your patron and sole benefactor?

TLC: The Lemon Head was a rogue ex-banker. This is all we know about his shady past. Why is he our king? The short answer is he forced us. The long answer is he forced us with love. 

HB: In a time when the future of the arts seems uncertain, how do you keep going? What drives you?

TLC: Mostly 35p energy drinks from the corner shop, 20p smart price noodles and the hope that someone will enjoy our shows or like our art work. ‘The arts’ is such an umbrella term it's hard to predict exactly what is going to happen in the future, what's going to be popular, what is going to die. We just concentrate on making work that we think is relevant, and making people laugh in the process.

HB: Tell me more about your Threshold 2014 project. What was the process behind the story you were telling? What kind of impact were you looking to make? And, probably something that everyone’s wondering… will we ever see the Lemon Submarine again?

TLC: We were given the theme of Retro-Futurism, and decided to go completely off topic and start making underwater stuff. This led us to imagine a 1960's Hollywood B-movie style future setting where plastic waste is taking over the oceans. Over the course of the next few weeks we got really carried away and started dreaming up a sexless clone workforce, irradiated eels with northern accents, giant LED jellyfish that fill the sky and, of course, The Lemon Submarine. If you haven't seen The Lemon Submarine yet, it will be out and about in the build up to future events.

If we were trying to make an impact, it would probably be to make people think about what they are throwing away, because one day there may be a team of unhappy clones trying to clean it up. I think this message might have become lost somewhere in all the craziness.

HB: And, finally: what has your experience of Threshold 2014 been?

TLC: We had loads of fun, watched loads of great music, loads of stress, loads of laughs, loads of plastic fumes going to our heads. The Threshold team have done an amazing job as always, and we would definitely recommend anyone looking for experience in this industry to volunteer for them. In 2013 they took us on, gave us a venue and let us host a stage in our first year of lemoning. We are massively grateful for the opportunities and experience Threshold have given us. It's a great festival that needs to carry on happening. 

Interview and photo by Helen Basil. 

Threshold Festival Past...