It's A Sin's Lydia West: My Life In Culture
The star of It's A Sin - sure to be one of the best shows of 2021 - chats to ELLE UK
It's A Sinread-through that my character is very loosely based on a good friend of his.He said: 'Her name's Jill Nalder and she will be playing the part of your mum in the show.' I just felt so honoured firstly to be even just involved in the project. But also, playing someone who is in the room with me and playing my mum, it's just special. Jill is the most interesting woman. She has so many anecdotes about the time, their friendship group and all living together in the Pink Palace in real life. Real life Jill embodies everything about the character Jill - she's just beautiful and fascinating.
Ben BlackallChannel 4My mum's a nurse and worked with Aids patients in the 1980sA lot of nurses wouldn't see [Aids] patients, there was a huge fear as no one knew anything. She saw the deterioration of these bright young men and said it was a truly traumatising experience. They would just fade away, from week to week. All she really remembers is that that side of it, just the vast number of men dying.
I learned that allies also faced a lot of prejudice at that timeAnd stigma. They also came face to face with some of the shame of the disease. It's eye opening that they were treated in such a way. Homophobia definitely contributed to the stigma of Aids. There was massive amounts of homophobia. headtopics.com
Yes, the show is timely but there are vast differences between the Aids epidemic and Coronavirus pandemicThe main thing being the response and efforts made [to stop the viruses]. It was a long time before anyone did anything [in the 1980s], because the majority of people it was killing were gay men and society that didn't see that as an issue. So, their response was not the same. If you just look at even some of the adverts like the 'don't die of ignorance' leaflet, it was just unbelievable, whereas Coronavirus is very much in the forefront of everyone's mind, in terms of getting the vaccine and making everyone better. Obviously, I'm here for that but I think the parallels between the two are that they are in just both global health pandemics. Everything else is very different.
Channel 4It's A Sincast are now my best friendsI went to a costume fitting and I was digging around asking who was playing everyone. So I went on Instagram, stalked each person and sent a message to Ken Omari Daniel and they replied and we kind of followed each other. I didn’t message Olly because I thought he wouldn’t see it. We then had a week of kind of intense rehearsals, where we just spent every single day together. I thought we'd discuss our characters but we actually just talked about ourselves and got to know each other as individuals. It was just the best way to get to know them as people. And then when it came to filming on day one, we were already so close and then throughout filming we just actually became good friends. So much so that I class them are my best friends. They’re just all lovely.
If I could live in any era it would have been the 1980sI want people to take away from the show that it obviously was a dreadful, traumatising time to live in. But it was also one of the most fun, free liberating, everything from fashion to music to culture. I was so happy to be immersed in in such an authentic way into that era through work. I never wear blusher in everyday life. But Jill is massively into blusher and the big eyes and the make-up artists would like coat layers of blusher on the cheeks, no blending, just a constant flushed look and I’m into it.Read more: ELLEUK »
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