What dreams may come by Alessia Belsito-Riera
La Soupco is a post WWII romance set in the Navy that writer and performer Abby Howells wrote when she was 11. She has no idea why she named it that. “I did no historical research”, she says. “And I genuinely thought this screenplay would win me an Academy Award.”
After finding La Soupco in a journal, Howells thought it “weirdly compelling”, at times terrible, but charming. “I thought it would be really cool to be able to tell my 11-year-old self that La Soupco does get performed one day”, she says.
In her upcoming NZ International Comedy Festival performance of La Soupco at BATS from the 9th to the 13th of May, Howells will take audiences through the show and finally give it an ending after 22 years. It’s about the dreams you have for yourself as a kid and how to reconcile when you don't achieve them, Howells says.
“La Soupco is absolutely a celebration”, so she hopes it will make people feel joyful, but she also talks about being on the autism spectrum and hopes some audience members will relate with that.
Howells has always loved comedy and used to force her childhood friends to act out scenes with her. When she did an open mic night in university, she “thought it was just going to be a bucket list tick type thing”, but “from the second I first got out there, I loved it”, Howells says.
Howells is nominated for a Billy T award this year and is “psyched” about it. “I really am just so happy to be here and on a ladder that I want to climb.”
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« Issue 194, April 25, 2023