Zach Zultana: Space Gigolo at Edmonton Fringe Festival

Zach Zultana: Space Gigolo

Rutherford School (8620 – 91 street) August 14 – 17, 19 – 23

Photo Credit: Kristopher Gower

Photo Credit: Kristopher Gower

An interview with Jeff Leard.

Describe your show in five words.

One man science fiction epic

Okay, now that we’re intrigued… what’s the longer description?

Set on a mining colony in the 22nd century we follow the rise of Zach Zultana, unlikely hero, poster boy for revolution, and reluctant sexual icon. The show is formatted like a standard science fiction movie, except instead of a multi-billion dollar budget, expensive camera gear, and a host of B-List celebrities it is performed with one man, his voice and body, and a chair and stool.

Your show is written by Ron Fromstein – what do you like most about Ron’s writing?

I think the thing I like most about Ron’s writing is his attention to detail, both in creating the proper setting and his concern for a clear and flowing narrative. It meant having to cut a lot of the script for time, but now every moment in the script is there because it needs to be.

Zach Zultana takes place in the future in space – what’s the most challenging part about establishing the setting of the show?

The most challenging part about establishing a show in the future in space is fitting in all of the little bits of exposition that set up the world of the play without getting bogged down by them. It is really easy to get caught up describing some minute aspect of life in space and let the narrative slip into the background. We worked really hard to make sure we set up as much of the world as possible while still moving the story forward.

You’re known for performing your own work at Fringe – how is it different for you this time, working with Ron’s play?

I enjoyed working with Ron on this play. As you may see if you attend the show I did end up writing a fair amount of the content in order to give the show my own personal touch, but most of the narrative and characters were created by Ron. As my run continues I find it more and more exciting as a performer delving into these characters and scenes that I would have never thought up on my own.

Anything else you want audiences to know about the show?

The title is a bit deceptive. There is considerably less sexual content than you might expect and at no time, I repeat NO TIME is there any reference to a mediocre series of movies made by Rob Schneider. We are in the midst of figuring out a more effective title at the moment.

Bonus question: Any names you want to drop who have been involved in your show (Edmonton arts people or otherwise)?

Nope. It was directed by my father, James Leard. He worked at Theatre Calgary for a while and may have taught at U of A for a couple years but that’s about it.

The 34th Edmonton International Fringe Theatre Festival is August 13 – 23. Get your tickets at starting August 4.

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