Ria Lina: 'Riawakening' tour comes to Worthing

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Comedian and scientist Ria Lina will be at Worthing Pavilion next week as part of her debut tour, 'Riawakening'. Ria fearlessly tackles the challenges of post-pandemic life, navigating the new normal, relationships in a digital era, the complexities of motherhood, and what it really means to be a woman today.

Q&A with Ria Lina

How are you feeling about your upcoming show in Worthing?

I’m looking forward to it! It’s also being live captioned, which we had in London, so we are able to invite those who are deaf or hard of hearing to come see the show. It’s not always possible to be this inclusive so I’m really pleased we can be at Worthing.

Ria Lina: RiawakeningRia Lina: Riawakening
Ria Lina: Riawakening

Tell us about Riawakening – without giving too much away?

It’s about coming out of the pandemic and realising a few things about my life. Last year I successfully completed my first marriage (yay me!) and this show is about how I ended up married so young and what comes next after coming out of a long-term relationship.

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How do you prepare for your performances?

I do a vocal warm-up of two songs: Fought & Lost by Sam Ryder/Brian May – to warm up the vocal chords – and Vampire by Olivia Rodrigo – for breath control. If you don’t believe me, sing that one twice and you will find yourself suitably out of breath! I do some harsh voice work in the second half of the show, so if I don’t warm up – I’m horse by the end of a weekend of shows!

As an accomplished scientist and a comedian/performer have you ever had a strange moment when your two careers collided?

Yes. The pandemic in a nutshell. I was a virologist in a past life, so when comedy shut down, I went back to science and more specifically, science communication, to try and help people make sense of what was a LOT of data and facts and also false information flying about.

Riawakening tackles the ups and downs of life after big changes – both socially and personally. If you could go back to talk to yourself 5, 10 or even 15 years ago what would you say?

Ooh, I love that you assume that ‘me’ 5/10/15 years ago would even listen! I think I would say: try and career in a straight line, it’s easy to get distracted by other things (if you’re in the arts, any creative pursuit is attractive) but try and stick with the one thing (comedy) and you will make the most progress. (I may have dabbled in all sorts of things along the way here, singing, cabaret, producing…)

What are some of the biggest challenges you faced in creating & putting on this show?

The show, without audience participation, is scripted 80mins long, so I would say the biggest challenge is remembering it all!

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What do you most enjoy about sharing stories through comedy?

There is a natural high you get making people laugh. It’s highly addictive, everyone loves it, if you tell a story around the dinner table, you’re hoping for a laugh.

What advice do you have for someone starting a career in comedy?

Run! Fast! Why would you do this to yourself???? I’m kidding. I would say, if you really want to do this, treat it like you would any skill you want to be the best at. Practice, practice, practice (that includes writing during the day AND performing at night) and watch, watch, watch as much as you can. Know your craft.

Summarise Riawakening in 3 words

Hilarious, heartwarming, insightful.

What do you hope audiences will take away from this show?

A t-shirt, or even a hoodie. I have some very funny mugs too….

I also hope they will take away a lovely photo of us from the meet & greet I always do at the end. I always enjoy meeting my audience afterwards and sharing stories. So hopefully see you there!

Thank you Ria!

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