Ian-Lloyd Anderson: On My Culture Radar
Actor on The Irishman, the early comedy of Bernie Mac and acting talent of Edie Falco
Ian-Lloyd Anderson: ‘I’m watching The Sopranos for the first time, and I’m enamoured by Edie Falco, who plays Tony Soprano’s wife.’ Photograph: Szymon Lazewski
Current favourite book?
I recently decided to read as many plays as I could over a six-month period to broaden my horizons – it’s easy to think a play isn’t for me and box myself in. Last week I read By the Bog of Cats by Marina Carr, Julius Caesar by Shakespeare, and The Iceman Cometh by Eugene O’Neill. They confirm certain ideas I have, but also increase the canvas I draw on; there’s a lot of crossover in plays, it seems.
Myself and my wife visit Howth a lot, and one of my favourite places there is Octupussy’s. It’s a little tapas bar on the pier that looks out over the harbour, and it only seats about 20 people. The prawn pil-pil is nice, but the menu is always changing – you can try four or five dishes to share. There’s also a new spot nearby called 30 Church Street. It does a good mix of dishes like pizzas and steak, so we can bring the kids there. The view is stunning; it looks over the graveyard and down onto the town, the harbour and Ireland’s Eye.
I like my comedy. Recently I’ve found myself going over a lot of early Bernie Mac. I didn’t realise the strength of his early Def Comedy Jam work. It’s hilarious but it’s also on point; it can get quite political. I didn’t like a lot of his later material because he became too broad – that can happen once you reach a certain level of success.
I have to pick The Cherry Orchard, which I’m working on. It’s an exciting project as it’s going to be on in the Black Box in Galway, but it’s also going to be screened around Ireland and worldwide, similar to the National Theatre in London. It’s a first for an Irish production, so it’s quite a moment. The Cherry Orchard is a Chekov play set around a Russian family returning to their home. It details the upper classes in early 20th century, who aren’t able to deal with the changing of society after the working classes are emancipated. They have to sell their cherry orchard in order to survive, but they don’t want to, so they’re burying their heads in the sand until it’s too late. It’s being adapted by Tom Murphy and put on by Druid, so it’s going to be an interesting production.
I listen to a range of music; it would be impossible to get the measure of me from that Spotify end of decade summary. I’m listening to a lot of John Pine and the moment, and The Missing Years is the album that I have on the most. It came out in 1991. He’s in the same mould as people like Steve Earle and maybe Bob Dylan. He’s a mix of Americana and folk; a lot of people would label him as country but he’s definitely not.
There are only two places I’d live if I couldn’t live in Dublin: Galway and Vancouver. I went to Vancouver about a year and a half ago to perform in a play, and I thought it was an amazing city. It’s big but it’s relaxed; you don’t feel claustrophobic. The people are cool too.
I’m watching The Sopranos for the first time, and I’m enamoured by Edie Falco, who plays Tony Soprano’s wife. She’s subtle, she’s real, and I believe her. I can’t pin down exactly why she’s so believable – if could, I’d copy her so that I could act like that too.
I subscribe to a podcast called The Anfield Wrap. It’s a fan-based podcast about Liverpool FC, and they do about 30 or 40 podcasts a week.
The last film I saw was The Irishman, which I liked. I thought Joe Pesci was fantastic in it. I believe it was three and a half hours long, but it didn’t feel like that to me.
Ian-Lloyd Anderson appears in The Cherry Orchard at The Black Box, Galway (February 22nd to March 7th) and The Bord Gais Energy Theatre Dublin (April 8th to 11th). See druid.ie for details.