The BiMate Interview: Sadie Clark
Sadie’s new play Algorithms introduces “the bisexual Bridget Jones for the online generation”.
It promises a hilarious and touching new one woman play, directed by Madelaine Moore, that follows an algorithm writer for an online dating site as she searches for love, happiness and satisfaction in a world defined more and more by online interactions.
Brooke has it all: the job, the flat, the girlfriend… that is, until it all goes tits up just before her birthday. Between stalking her friends on social media and comments from her overbearing mother, hapless Brooke is well aware of what life is supposed to look like. So, she heads online looking for answers and gives the science of love – online dating – a chance.
Algorithms is a refreshing piece representing bisexual identity onstage without it defining the story: a play for anyone who has ever wondered why they feel so lonely when connecting with others is meant to be easier than ever.
Catch it at the Edinburgh Fringe, Wednesday 31st July til Monday 26th August 2019 (not 13th), 12:45 at Pleasance Courtyard (Baby Grand). Tickets: www.pleasance.co.uk or 0131 556 6550
Hello! Take a seat and introduce yourself.
My name is Sadie Clark, I’m an actor, writer and comedy improviser based in London, though I also call Norfolk home. I’ve spent the last year and a half working on my first play, a one-woman show called Algorithms, which is ‘a tragicomic bisexual Bridget Jones for the online generation’.
Which Olympic sport (current or wished for) could you represent your country in?
Oooh probably the Equestrian discipline: dressage, eventing and jumping. I’m definitely nowhere near good enough but I’ve been horse riding for about twenty four years so it’s the one I’d most enjoy!
What’s the best collective noun for bisexuals?
Do you know, I have never heard any!? I had to Google this to see if there was something I’ve been missing and I’m still not sure… if I was going to make one up I’d suggest ‘a biche of bis’ because biche describes words that sound the same but have different meanings and I think there can often be much confusion about what the term bisexual means…
When did you know you were bisexual?
I was actually 26 when I had my ‘light-bulb’ moment. I was watching first dates and there were two really attractive femme women on a date, flirting as they licked chocolate mousse off their dessert spoons, and in the immortal words of Maura off Love Island I got ‘fanny flutters’ and suddenly thought ‘oh I’m sexually attracted to women too’. In retrospect, I think I’d always been attracted to women, but because I was attracted to men too, and there were zero openly out bi role models for me growing up, I didn’t realise it was a thing…
What’s your favourite sexual memory?
Ha ha I feel like this is too personal to share in an interview, although saying that a couple of my favourites have made it into my play (in a more dramatised way) so come and see it and see if you can work out which they are…
What’s your favourite thing about being bi?
I enjoy the fact that I have more options on who to date because I’m attracted to people of all genders, although I’m extremely picky and rarely meet people I fancy so it doesn’t always feel like I have more choice…!
What’s your favourite sex accessory?
My vibrator… as the protagonist in Algorithms, Brooke, says: “I find external clitoral stimulation much more effective at getting me off!”
Who do you respect most in the world?
I have oodles of respect for my parents. There was a time when I was younger when I think I saw my Mum and Dad as just that, rather than as people. As I’ve gotten older I’ve realised more and more that our parents are people with full lives lived long before we were born. I’m trying to hear more and more about both their lives before me and my sister came along. They’ve both done really interesting and exciting things and I have a lot of respect for them both.
What/who has inspired you the most?
Recently I’ve been hugely inspired by Greta Thunberg. I find myself being incredibly pessimistic about the future of the planet when it comes to climate change and I’ve been inspired by Greta’s optimism and determination to take action.
Which historical person would you most like to meet?
It’s not someone famous but I’d love to meet someone from four or five generations back in my family just to hear about their life.
What makes you smile?
Dancing with total abandon.
What should people try?
Jumping into the cold North Sea on a warm September day.
What are you most proud/ashamed of?
I’m most proud of writing and performing my one-woman show Algorithms. There was a time in my life when I wasn’t brave enough to pick up a pen and try writing, and I’m extremely pleased I overcame that and now have a show I’m incredibly proud of and love performing.
I still feel ashamed about ghosting my first boyfriend when I was 15…
What about your life would most surprise your 16 year old self?
That I still haven’t broken a single bone in my body – I’m the clumsiest person I know so it’s a miracle. I’m also incredibly superstitious so I’ve just had to touch wood…
Thanks and good luck in Edinburgh!
This first appeared in BCN magazine issue 156, July/August 2019.