Unveiling Aimée Kelly: The star of London’s theatrical gem, Boy Parts
In the heart of London’s vibrant theatre scene, a captivating performance is stealing the spotlight, and at its center is the talented actress Aimée Kelly. Best known for her dynamic roles on both screen and stage, Aimée takes center stage in the enthralling play Boy Parts, leaving audiences spellbound with her mesmerizing presence.
Boy Parts has been making waves for its bold narrative and thought-provoking themes, and Aimée’s portrayal adds a layer of depth that resonates with theatre enthusiasts and newcomers alike. We explore the intricacies of the play and the unique challenges that come with bringing such a compelling story to life in one of London’s most esteemed venues.
As the stage lights dim and the audience hushes in anticipation, Aimée Kelly invites us into the magic of live performance, where every emotion is felt, and every word is a brushstroke on the canvas of storytelling. Chatting with 1883 Magazine, Aimée Kelly dives deep into her transformative journey as she embodies the complexities of her character in Boy Parts.
When you think back to when you first began acting to now, how would you describe the way you’ve grown and developed since then?
I have of course evolved as an actor with age and experience, but I always think it’s interesting we always want to grow and try new things; actually, when you look back at the work you have done in previous years, I think there’s something to be said about that. Of course, now I am able to give a more nuanced performance there are roles that I played when I first started out that I would struggle to do now! That’s the beauty of this job, I think.
Were you familiar with the book prior to getting the role in the play?
I was a huge fan of the book. I devoured it in about 48 hours in the first lockdown and instantly thought this had to be a series/play/film.
Since this is a one-woman play, was that ever daunting to you to undertake?
I think any one-person show is such an undertaking because apart from the exterior accompaniment of the set design/lights/music you are truly on your own up there, but for me I think that’s the fun of it. I love being in the driver’s seat and having full control of taking an audience on a journey. There is nowhere to hide with a one-woman show and I guess that’s one of the things that excited me about it.
What was the preparation process like? Did you speak with the author at all to better understand Irina?
The author worked closely with the scriptwriter/adapter, and they were around a lot for us to discuss or flag anything we needed to question. I feel I had a pretty strong understanding of who Irina was from reading the book alone, she stuck with me for a few years and Eliza (Author) knew how much I loved her from the beginning. I think she writes, and Gill adapts in a way that keeps all the north-east dialect which really is the heart of the piece and is a world I understand.
Throughout both the play and book, Irina makes some choices that many wouldn’t be able to justify. Was it ever difficult to understand her motives or to find some sort of connection with her?
Irina is a contemporary renaissance woman, she’s confronting the status quo by being in control of men’s bodies, the way we are used to seeing men control women. That’s why she’s so dangerous – she’s a reflection of the masculine archetype that we have all consciously known and submitted to. It’s why all genders are finding her to be of interest.
This play has you morphing into other characters — Flo, Flo’s boyfriend Michael, the models and various other men — and all of their accents and characteristics. What was it like putting on all of the different ‘hats’ and playing multiple other characters?
It’s all the fun of the fair! Finding those characters in rehearsal is the best bit and even after putting them in front of an audience you discover what works and what doesn’t so you still have the power to change and tweak which has been something I’ve really revealed in.
What was the collaboration process like between you, Sara Joyce and Eliza Clark?
It was exactly what it says on the tin, Gill included. I couldn’t have asked for a better creative team. They’re a force to be reckoned with and it’s empowering to work with women who all are working towards the same thing.
As the play wraps up over the next few weeks, what do you hope people (and even yourself!) have taken away from it?
I think this play is very much about the cultural impact that flawed women have on audiences. I had lots of fans of the book as well as theatregoers who come in blind and are not even aware of the book tell me that they are leaving the theatre with so much to think about and that makes me feel like we’re doing our jobs correctly.
Lastly, if you could manifest something for yourself over the next year, what would it be?
A happy and healthy year!
Photography Lily Craigen
Styling Morgan Hall
Make Up India Rawlings
Hair Khanya Henry
Styling Assistants Olivia Miller and Drew Smith