An Interview with Adam Galbraith
Watching Adam Galbraith dance is like watching power in motion. And the pleasure he derives from performing is palpable. He is a very masculine figure on stage that the eye automatically follows.
He is a walking contradiction: one moment a big, muscular dude on a skateboard and then with a simple fluid hand movement, he is a sensitive dancer.
After we shot some head shots, we played around some strange trees in downtown Los Angeles - or rather he played, climbing around up and down and I photographed him - just knowing that any moment he would come tumbling down and I would be blamed! I should have known better.
His dancer's grace and agility made doing Tarzan through the tree branches a lark.
Cavorting for the camera in a parking garage was next and I was amazed at how easily he dropped into one of the swan characters from Swan Lake, angling his body and arms, capturing the movement of a swan.
Our interview was a conversation full of laughs and giggles and a few moments of seriousness. I called him the "class clown" but I think he just has an incredible 'joie de vivre' that is infectious. Of course we started off with the basics of where he grew up, how old he is and how tall.
LH: How long have you been dancing?
AG: I have been dancing since I was 17. Quite a late starter. It was just after I started dancing and we were watching Swan Lake on television. I was sitting next to my mum and she said "Oh are you going to be in that?" And I said "I am going to be in Swan Lake someday. But it was this particular version, Matt's version of Swan Lake and it's quite bizarre I finally ended up doing it.
LH: Tell me about being the class clown.
AG: I'm not!!! I'm just quite a lively person. I guess you would say I like being the center of attention, being on show. But I think you have been quite good at capturing me at the wrong time.
LH: Like giving Neil a noogie.
AG: Yeh, I was just practicing that for the show - that's when he's Angelo. When he plays Angelo I rough him up a bit. You do catch me at odd times, like when I was flying through the rehearsal room on my skateboard. Which is a very new thing to me. I only started playing around with it since we came out here. I had one when I was a lot younger but was never any good, but it sorta gets me to and from the theater, quicker than walking.
AG: I have one younger brother who is 21. His name is Craig. He is actually studying drama at the college called John Moores. My fathers name is Alan and my mother's is Trixie.
LH: I want to ask you a Billy Elliot kind of question. What does it feel like to dance? When you are dancing, are you full of joy or are you trying to remember where you go next? Do you lose yourself in the dance?
AG: It really depends on what you are doing, what piece you are doing. For example if I am dancing Swan Lake I have a much different feeling than if I am dancing a role in Car Man. I think it maybe depends on what kind of role you play, actually because Swan Lake is very much fantasy and you're not actually playing a human being, You are playing a creature. You can get very very tied up emotionally in the piece. And emotions can take you onto another level.
But in Car man when I am dancing, I feel it's a lot more real. 'Cause the show is on a realistic basis. And it's supposed to be reality. Everything just feels a lot more physical and harsher. Maybe that's to do with the kind of movement in the piece - it's a very gritty piece.
LH: Even dancing Dino? (the older loutish husband)
AG: Dino has a lot more to do with the acting side as opposed to playing Hot Rod or Bruno, it's a lot more about character.
LH: Which role do you prefer?
AG: I like all three. Because they're all totally three different characters.
LH: But which ONE do you prefer?!
AG: I go through phases when I prefer one role to another. For example, if I haven't done a role for a couple of weeks or so, and I have just been doing one role, you can sometimes sorta slow down a little in it. But then you do your next role and then it freshens it back up and you think 'ah great I haven't done that for awhile, good to get into that again'.
But I get a lot of joy out of doing all three of the roles.
AG: I'm going to go back home and see my girlfriend, who I haven't seen in a long while.
I am going to see what is around work wise, dancing. There's a few auditions hopefully that will be coming up over Christmas for a couple of months or so. If nothing comes up dancing then I have a trusty friend that I help run his bar back in London. If worse comes to the worst then I always have a bit of work with him.
AG: I still take class. I will go and do a ballet class in the morning usually in Central London because it is just around the corner from the bar I work at.
LH: Do you want to be a dancer all your life - until you can't dance anymore?
AG: I will dance as long as I still enjoy it - as long as I am getting things from and out of it. At the moment I am looking to get quite a few more years out of it. But I also want to move over into the acting scene as well. Because I miss the pure drama that I used to do. I mean this is a fantastic company because it combines dance and drama just perfect for me at the moment. And I get something very much out of it. But when my body says 'no, you can't do this anymore' then I am going to start moving over into the acting side of things.
- An Auto-Erotic Thriller -
- Talk about the show -
All photos copyright 2001 Lara Hartley unless noted otherwise
All contributions as noted in each feature.