Caro Meets Comedy Interview

Jessie Cave: I Loved Her

By | Published on Wednesday 25 November 2015


You may know Jessie Cave from her live performances, or even her recently published book, but most people will recognise her as the actress who played Lavender Brown in some of those films about a famous boy-wizard and how he gets on at school.
I rather think Jessie Cave is much more interesting than Lavender Brown, though, so I think you should forget about that fictional character now, and focus on the real person behind her, who has proven herself to be a highly intelligent, engaging performer with some very interesting stories to tell. I put some questions to her, ahead of her latest Soho Theatre run.

CM: Can you tell us a bit about the show? What is it about, and what made you choose that title?
JC: The show is about my obsession with my boyfriend’s ex/exes. It follows me as I come from having never being in a real relationship, to now being in love and (hopefully) accepting that he has been in love (a few times) before, and that is okay… I chose that title because the ridiculous details I have collected about his exes have kind of led to me to loving them a little.

CM: Does it conform to a specific genre? Would you describe it as stand up? Character comedy? Storytelling?
JC: It is confessional stand up with the help of some cardboard cut outs in the guise of my boyfriend and my baby. It is not character comedy, but sometimes I wish it was.

CM: You’re a well known film-and-TV face, yet you return to this kind of live performance. How do the two compare? If you had to choose, which would it be?
JC: I feel very lucky to be able to do a few different things, but I suppose I prefer performing my own stuff. But it’s SO nerve-wracking and complicated sometimes, it can be a relief to be saying someone else’s lines in something I don’t have to organise! I love doing both – with my drawings bubbling alongside.

CM: Did you always want to be a performer? Did any other performers influence you when you were growing up?
JC: Not at all! I was at art school and needed money, so went to audition for a kids agency, and the next thing I knew I was in an advert. I thought that would be it, and I was so happy because I got the money I needed for the time being… but the auditions kept coming, and suddenly I was a desperate actress. I always did other things on the side, though, and I admire performers who also write – my childhood hero – mainly because she was my mum’s and she was always on tv – was Roseanne Barr.

CM: Tell us about your doodly book, ‘Love Sick‘. What’s in it? Are you an inveterate doodler?
JC: I use illustrations in my show; drawing has always been a part of my daily routine and I consider myself more of an illustrator than anything else… but the book is a collection of the last four years of doodles I have done online – all about love – or unrequited love. It’s a bit like my diary – and charts the evolution of a relationship – the pining, the dating, the love, the monotony, the inevitable break up….

CM: Can you tell us an amusing anecdote from the set of ‘Harry Potter’? Or a dull one, we’re not that fussy.
JC: I had to kiss Rupert Grint on my first day of filming, in a stairwell with no sides, and there was a man called James standing on the ground ready to catch me if I fell, which I found very funny, as he absolutely would not be able to catch me. I also couldn’t see anything throughout filming because I hadn’t realised contact lenses existed yet.

CM: Is this a show you’ll keep doing? Do you have more dates planned for it?
JC: Yes, I think I am going to Melbourne comedy festival with it next year, and I am doing it again at the Udderbelly in June which is very exciting. I’m planning a short doodle book to accompany it too.

CM: What’s next for you? New stuff in the pipeline?
I am in the current series of ‘Trollied’ on Sky, playing a lovely character called Heather; I am in an episode around Christmas of ‘Call the Midwife’, and I am working on my next book.

Jessie Cave performs ‘I Loved Her’ at Soho Theatre from 1-5 Dec. For more info and to book tickets tootle over to this page here.

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