Most recently seen in the UK Tour of Beautiful: The Carole King Musical (sadly cut short due to the pandemic), actress Vicki Manser has also starred in Six the musical at the Arts Theatre, Bat out of Hell and Sunny Afternoon. I was lucky enough to talk to Vicki all about how she is adapting to this strange new way of life in lockdown and her hopes for the future of the theatre industry once all of this is finally over.
First of all, how are you feeling about the whole virus and lockdown situation?
It has been devastating for everyone and of course it’s tough but I’m doing my best to keep a positive outlook! Unfortunately there isn’t anything we can do other than follow the important message set the government … stay home, protect the NHS and save lives … and that means that each day is one day nearer to this all being over.
How have you been keeping yourself occupied during the lockdown?
Mentally it can be tough as I am someone who likes to be creative, keep busy and be proactive …. but I have been aiming to do just that in lockdown! I have been keeping extremely busy most days … and although it doesn’t involve going outside of my flat (or my roof for those that follow me on insta haha) I am still teaching a lot online, writing music, and even studying! I write some nights a list of things I want to achieve the next day … and then set my alarm and get up and go! (To my living room) haha! Routine is key I think!
What are you most looking forward to doing once lockdown is over?
Going to my Mum, Dad and sisters for a BBQ and cuddles!!!!!
Is there anything we, as theatre fans, can do to help the arts industry in these trying times?
Just keep doing what your doing! By following and engaging with us all on socials keeps the industry alive and that’s the main thing!! The support is incredible!
What is your favourite thing about the theatre industry as a whole?
I think this situation has shown how uplifting and resilient the people of musical theatre are and I’m so lucky that my timeline is filled with such positivity, comedy and creative things! I feel lucky to be a part of that community doing our very best to keep everyone’s spirits high!
With the theatres closed and so much being moved online, do you think that we are seeing a big change in how the industry works?
Definitely in some ways. With workshops and teaching it’s been amazing to be able to reach people from all over the world! I love that! But you can’t beat live theatre in my opinion … and I think it will be so special when the theatres can open again!
How have you been managing day to day life in quarantine? Do you have a routine, or do you just go with the flow?
Routine! I think I would go mad otherwise … I had a couple of days off from routine and I drew faces on my bananas! Fruit friends Miranda style! Haha!
Do you have any advice for people who are perhaps finding lockdown hard to manage?
Set yourself goals that you would like to achieve … no matter how small … it could be as simple as washing your hair … but it feels so good when you get to tick it off your list! And just remember each day is another day closer to normality (or a new kind of normal at least!) Keep thinking of the positives! We are all in this together! We have got this!
Do you think that it is important to talk about mental health in these challenging times?
Absolutely, it’s important to talk about mental health ALWAYS not just in these trying times! Reach out, speak to people. Don’t be scared to admit you find things difficult. Sometimes I have days where I have a little cry and that’s ok! Tomorrow is always a brand new day and I refocus! But keep talking! Talking is good!