When David Moyes christened Everton FC “The People’s Club” upon his arrival at Goodison Park over a decade ago, he tapped into something. Sure, we all know it was just a masterful bit of PR and not too many Evertonians took it very seriously, but if you repeat something enough, these days, it becomes considered opinion. A post-factual world? Perhaps. But there is one fact that nobody can argue about in Liverpool and that’s that the Royal Court has become the people’s theatre in this town.
The revolution on Roe Street started so long ago now, that it just doesn’t matter when it actually was that crowds started pouring back into the old place. Since the likes of ‘Brick Up… ‘, ‘Lost Soul’, ‘Stags & Hens’ and ‘Lennon’ have all sold the theatre out for extended runs, the building has been reinvigorated with a redesign and the respected likes of Alan Bleasdale’s ‘Down The Dock Road’ and Helen Forrester’s ‘Twopence To Cross The Mersey’ have returned. And into that list, recently, came ‘The Royal’, co-written by Liverpool actress, Lindzi Germain (pictured first on the left, above).
“I loved writing ‘The Royal’, it’s my first one and became my baby,” laughs Lindzi. “I have the writing bug now, but I’m not sure how I will ever top this one,” she says. The play ran for a month this summer and received rave reviews across the board, for its incisive hilarity and honesty. “It’s even more difficult to act in something you’ve written,” Lindzi reveals. “My brain never stopped! I was always thinking of new lines and gags – and then writing them when I got home from rehearsals.”
#LiverpoolLessOrdinary was made for people like Lindzi Germain, Scousers in possession of it all: creativity, wit, audacity and tenacity. Here, we find out more about how the Royal Court’s latest hit came to the actress, why it inspired her to write for the first time and what stirs inside of someone to make them want to stand out from the crowd…
Can you remember the moment when you first thought you wanted to act?
It was in school with an English supply teacher, Mr Harvey. He told my mum and dad that I had a flare for making people laugh. I also remember going to the Everyman, as a kid, to see a play called ‘No Holds Barred’ – a two-hander and the complete works of Shakespeare! It was a comedy, with Andrew Schofield and Michael Starke, and they played two dockers from Liverpool… little did I know then that these fantastic actors would become two of my best mates and I would get to act alongside both of them.
Tell us a bit more about your background…
I grew up in Wavertree and went to Lawrence Road school and then onto Childwall Valley. I went straight to drama college from there and studied for three years – dance, drama and music.
We’ve heard you sing, what a voice!
Thanks. I don’t play an instrument, sadly, that’ s a big regret of mine. But I can smash the tambourine!
Back to the day job. How was it writing ‘The Royal’?
I loved it, but she’s epic! The director, Cal McCrystal, is amazing and would ask for new stuff, too. I’m not precious and I loved having his input – little situations or ideas. If it worked, great!, we kept it in.
Your first play was made for the Royal Court! How proud are you to be one of its regulars?
I love working there, it’s home from home for me and I love the huge extended family we have at the theatre. I’m grateful for every job and opportunity they have given me. The Royal Court is known for its homegrown comedy and that’s what people love about it: it’s written for them and about them. If you like that, then there is nowhere else on earth like the Royal Court.
Who are your favourite writers and actors from Liverpool?
Lynda La Plante. I was lucky enough to be cast in ‘Above Suspicion’ and I loved it. I have so many favourite actors, though, probably too many to mention.
Go on… for us!
Andrew Schofield always stands out – I played his wife in ‘Lost Soul’, my first Dave Kirby play. Drew taught me so much about this mad business!
What is your dream role to be cast in and why?
A lead in ‘Hollyoaks’ – it’s around the corner from me and I could be the ‘Ken Barlow’ of that soap! Only messing, I’ve never even watched it… I would love to play so many characters: ‘Mama Morton’ in ‘Chicago’, ‘Madame Thénardier’ in ‘Les Mis’, ‘Rosie’ in ‘Mamma Mia’ and ‘Mrs Johnstone’ in ‘Blood Brothers’.
Some great characters. What about the story of your life – what would that be called?
‘Alright For A Liver Bird’ – when I was on tour with Claire Sweeney, for ‘Sex In Suburbia’, every time we’d go somewhere lush, we’d say “alright for a couple of Liver birds”…
Who would play you?
My daughter, Abbie. She knows me inside out, is a cracking little actor and wants to go into the business.
Pic courtesy Bond Media Agency