Other people fuel my creativity - Interview with Darius Nash


Darius Nash is a new face at this years Settle Stories Festival and one we're very excited to see. 

Darius works as a contemporary actor, musician and writer. He works across mediums to create performances that merge movement, improv, storytelling and clowning. We're very excited to announce that he'll be delivering a Clowning Workshop at this year's festival amongst other performances. 

He is a director of Nose2Nose who create exciting contemorary theatre perfomances and has recently returned from a tour of Asia with Hireath, a one man show about traveling. Darius also works regularly with BardsBarter, Shakespeare Link; Avant Cymru; National Theatre Wales, ClockTower and now, in collaboration with storyteller Tamar Eluned Williams, on Stories for the Silver Tree.

Before his visit to Settle, we caught up with him to scratch the surface of his fascinating life and career. 

Q: What do you consider to be your greatest achievement?

A: For me, any amount of time I can live, eat and pay the rent through theatre, stories and music I consider to be a great achievement and I'm very happy and proud to be able to make something I enjoy so much my job. Don't get me wrong, it doesn't always seem to last very long before needing 'a real-life job' to fill the gaps in the schedule, but those times in between I am very proud of.
Q: What inspires your creativity?
A: I am a serial collaborator. Other people fuel my creativity. I feed off working with other people and discovering new ideas, skills and ways of creating. I get very bored on my own.
Q: Give one piece of advice to your younger self.
A: Embrace uncertainty a bit more. Try not to plan so much and go with the flow.
Q: Who is your artistic idol & why?
A: I have many idols from different fields of art. I think I'm a little like a magpie in some respects in that I like to take a little from lots of different forms. I find it hard to pick just one so I'm going to list a few. David Bowie for his originality and creative bravery, Bosch and Dali for their attention to detail and their wonderful imaginations, I'm a big fan of Belarus Free Theatre Company and the work they do around artistic censorship and I'm just finishing one of Robin Hobbs last novels and loving her world creation and her wonderful way of writing characters.
Q: What is your key goal with your artistic practice?
A: I think my main driving force is to be creative and express myself. I guess some people may see that as slightly selfish but it is something that makes me happy. I would also say that I enjoy entertaining other people, making them happy and taking them somewhere else. I particularly enjoy the ability to explore things I feel strongly about and hopefully contribute somewhat in a positive way to the world. For me these manifest in ideas of social equality and social justice and as an artist, we are in a lucky position to be able to stand in front of others and bring up these ideas in an interesting way.
Q: What are the stakes? What happens if you fail?
A: I don't really think anyone can fail. Theatre and arts is something I love to do so any time spent doing it is a bonus. I'd like to say there are no stakes either but I guess not being able to be expressive and creative would be a pretty rubbish outcome. That and not paying my rent, but luckily it hasn't ever come to that.
Q: If you could be any literary character, who would you be and why?
A: I'm a big fan of fantasy so anyone from Robin Hobb or Patrick Rothfuss worlds would be pretty good I think. To be able to escape into magic and live-ships and music and flying would be amazing! Also, I'm that age where Harry Potter was a big influence on me growing up so I hold a massive soft spot for that universe. Maybe a character that gets to work with all the magical beasts would be fun.
Q: What do you want your tombstone to say?
A: Well, I think I'd like to be cremated so probably nothing. I once met a potter who picked me up whilst I was hitching to Pembrokeshire a few years ago. His secret technique was to burn the wood from particular trees and extract the minerals from the ash and put them in his glazes. He explained how each pot had different colour metallic elements in the glazes depending on the minerals and metals in that species of tree. I really liked that idea and since meeting him I always wondered if that was something you could do with someone's ashes and make a glazed pot with the minerals that make up their person? I thought this might be an interesting way to be remembered, even if it is a little morbid.

Don't miss Darius at the Settle Stories Festival. He will be delivering a Clowning Workshop and performing Stories for the Silver Tree.