For the second edition of Overheard at Contact, we wanted to dig up some juicy secrets about rising comedy and theatre star Amy Vreeke, but as it turns out, she LOVES to share, so we just took her for a drink instead.
Amy is an alumna of Contact Young Company, currently developing the Contact and Sick! Festival commissioned performance - The Year My Vagina Tried to Kill Me - about her personal experience of endometriosis. She’s also supporting Sophie Willan’s Contact-commissioned show Branded at The Lowry on 31 May.
We caught up with Amy as she is drinking an ice cold pint - on a surprisingly hot day for Manchester - outside a pub in Hulme.
So… I bet you get asked this all the time, but how do you pronounce your name?
Breaker but with a V. So… Vrayker.
You are a very open person. Have you ever said something that has made a whole room really awkward?
Yes. Really quite often. I doubt you’d be allowed to print the examples. I am bad at filtering myself. My mum has always been really open and it’s how I was brought up. I rarely feel embarrassed or awkward myself, It’s just something I seem to elicit in other people!
Have you ever had anything unusual or disastrous happen at a gig?
Oh plenty of times! One example is, I turned up a little late (my train had been delayed) so arrived as the gig had already started. I REALLY needed the loo and I assumed I’d not be on until the middle section so I ran to the loo. As I was sat on the toilet, I heard the compere announce my name and introduce me onto the stage! I had to move pretty quickly to make it up there before it got awkward. I was so out of breath, I had to tell the audience what they’d interrupted!
How did you first get into stand up?
I joined a comedy society when I first started Uni with the intention to just take part in writing sketches and working on comedy acting skills. I didn’t think I’d try stand up, it seemed way too scary. But the chair of the society persuaded me to give it a go, so I did and I loved it and thankfully so did the audience. From there I just kept gigging, at first it was mainly at university and then anywhere that would have me. It was great having such a supportive environment to start off with, I’m not sure it’d have been as easy if I didn’t have such a great group of friends doing it at the same time.
What’s your fave venue to play?
I have a favourite night to play, which is Laughing Cows (In Manchester). It’s always a cracking all female line up and the audience are always really up for a laugh. It’s one of those nights that really offers progression and support for the acts, there’s always a really nice sense of community there.
What do you do when you are not working?
Catch up on Corrie. Go to the pub. I love travelling, and much to my surprise I’ve recently started enjoying exercise… especially Yoga. But mostly (and please excuse my GCSE French answer here) I spend time with my family and friends.
If you had to recommend one place to visit in Manchester where would it be?
That is a really difficult one! I’m going to have to say John Rylands Library. It’s gorgeous.
And final question, with no ulterior motive… care to plug any upcoming shows?
YES! Why do you think I let you buy me a pint? Haha. I’m supporting the fabulous Sophie Willan at the Lowry on May 31st, I think there are only a few tickets left but it’s going to be a cracking night. And also my very own show The Year My Vagina Tried To Kill Me is previewing on November 16th and 17th – tickets available on Contact’s website. I’m dead excited about it, people that like laughing and fannies should come.