Adam Garcia: On My Culture Radar
Actor and dancer on the weird mind of Bill Bailey, the art scene in Berlin and the productions of Matthew Bourne
Adam Gracia will launch PERFORM, Ireland’s first performing arts festival which runs from 15th-17th February 2019 in the RDS.
Current favourite book
I’m reading Noam Chomsky’s How the World Works. He’s amazing, I’m obsessed with him. It’s quite extraordinary to hear his takes, he thinks on a much bigger level than most of us and he’s quite unscrupulous with it. In this book, he talks particularly about the American government. It’s a thoroughly depressing but invaluable read.
Cottage Point Inn in Sydney is an amazing restaurant where my wife and I got engaged. You can either drive or catch a sea plane there, and the restaurant is in something like a gazebo. They offer an elaborate tasting menu with wine pairings - the cheese course at the end is ridiculously good. There’s a whole national park around you too, so the view is exquisite, the food is delicious and it’s all just terribly romantic.
I always default to Bill Bailey. I love weirdness and he’s the weirdest of the weird. I saw him a couple of years ago on tour in London. You watch him and you get a fascinating insight into how his mind works. And I like that mind.
The last one I absolutely loved was when [the choreographer] Matthew Bourne produced The Red Shoes at Sadler’s Wells in London. Whenever I go and see a Matthew Bourne production I’m blown away by everything in it, from the production design, to obviously the choreography, and the performances that he manages to construct without words. It’s staggering. No wonder he was knighted.
I quite like the late Fred Cress. He won the Archibald Prize in Australia. He’s quite subversive.
My favourite city in Europe is Berlin. It has everything and it’s so civilised. You can wake up at 4am and feel like having a soup and a sandwich and there will be a place open. Plus it’s so fun, artistic and cultured. I remember going to an artists’ residence in a disused tower block near the river which was open to the public so you could see where the artists worked and lived. They’d show you films that they’d made or sculptures they were creating. Hopefully it’s still there and has not become a car park.
Because Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri is about trying to win over corruption, that’s pretty relevant. It has my favourite actors in it: Sam Rockwell, who’s just splendid all the time; Woody Harrelson, who is one of those actors who’s seemingly underrated but everyone rates him; and Frances McDormand, who is spellbinding. I remember watching her in Fargo as a pregnant Minnesotan thinking, “who is this incredible person”.
Social media profile
The Fat Jewish (@thefatjewish) on Instagram is a constant source of lols, as the kids would say. He does social commentary. All his posts are sardonic and invariably rude. But he’s very funny. He has 10 million followers and growing.
The Handmaid’s Tale. I’m a Margaret Atwood fan anyway, I love her other books like the Blind Assassin and the MaddAddam trilogy. She’s the queen of dystopia. She’s somewhat prescient in her creations, and it’s terrifying. Maybe Trump read Margaret Atwood and thought “hey, this is a great idea”. At least that would make him well-read.
Adam Garcia will present workshops at Perform, Ireland’s first performing arts festival between February 15th and 17th. See performireland.ie for more.