Baba Yaga - Q&A with Shona Reppe

Baba Yaga - Q&A with Shona Reppe

On Friday 11 May 2018 to Saturday 12 May 2018 we have Baba Yaga at the Lemon Tree. A new take on an old Russian folktale guaranteed to give you lots to chew on…

Vaselina lives the quiet life, safely tucked away on the third floor of a very tall apartment block eating noodles (not spicy) and polishing her beloved spoon collection. But all that changes when she is forced to confront the terrifying Baba Yaga who plays her music far too loudly and eats jelly babies with her mouth open.


Who is this mysterious neighbour? Will she ever turn the music down? And what exactly is she planning for dinner?

An uproarious musical journey to the top floor and beyond, Baba Yaga is a brand new take on an old Russian folktale co-created by director Rosemary Myers and two unique and celebrated artists from opposite ends of the globe; Shona Reppe (Scotland) and Christine Johnston (Australia).

Baba Yaga is part of the Edinburgh International Children’s Festival on tour and is supported by the Scottish Government’s Edinburgh Festivals Expo Fund.


We are pleased to feature a Q&A with artist Shona Reppe.


Is it true that this collaboration was sparked after you saw Christine Johnson perform Fluff at The Children’s Festival in 2016?

Yes I LOVED Fluff and Christine’s performance, but more than that I saw something exciting about the show that I hadn’t seen for a long time. It was strange and surreal and very bold. I met her after the show and we hit it off so I’m delighted we can work together even though we live on opposite sides of the world.


What has the chemistry been like so far?

Brilliant - we are all very different but complement each other. 3 strong women in a room. Bring it on.


What can audiences expect from seeing Baba Yaga?

To be honest I can’t say yet except I doubt that it will be boring.


Your work tours international and regionally extensively, how important is it to tour your work around Scotland?

Very, of course. All my shows have toured Scotland and always will - I only go abroad with a show once it has been shown in Scotland - If it doesn’t work here it won’t work anywhere else. Scottish audiences are honest audiences. I have been very lucky to have had faithful audiences who bring their children to all my shows once they have seen my work - they tell me on twitter :)


What would you say to a young person thinking about a career in theatre?

Go for it. If that is your passion. Start simple, know your craft, listen to your audience. Don’t expect to be a millionaire. Expect to feel challenged and as a result exhilarated.


Do you remember the first show you saw as a young person? What made you want to start making theatre all those years ago?

Not really but I remember the first show that made me want to be on stage - The Steadfast Tin Solider by Banyan Theatre co. 1993 - I was blown away by the emotional journey it took me on even though it was super simple. I was also a fan of the Clangers and have probably been more influenced by the TV shows I saw as a child - many were stop frame animation.


What makes you still want to make theatre today?

It’s no secret that it’s tough to make it as an artist in theatre, that is not why I’m here, I love sharing my worlds with my audiences, hearing their reactions and being able to express myself through my art. I am lucky as I haven’t had to compromise my work - YET!


Can you please tell us what else 2018 holds for you? New shows? Other projects?

I am also making a show with Charlot Lemon of Velo Theatre, France. It will be a solo show (I’m in it). I have worked with Velo before and I LOVE their work - I am lucky this year to work with people who I love and respect which I don’t take for granted.


Tell us a bit more about what you like about where you grew up (Aberdeen?) and where you are now (Inverkeithing?). Is there anywhere else on the tour that you have a connection with?

I was a happy child with a very big imagination. I had a doll house and acted out all sorts of scenarios involving tiny letters and car chases. I also loved ponies and had a bowl cut. Happy days.

Now I live In Inverkeithing Fife just outside Edinburgh with my husband and my two kids, a cat a dog and 6 stick insects. Sometimes I have a bowl cut. Happy days.

Tam my husband is going to operate Baba Yaga on tour so that will be nice.



Start - Fri - 1.30pm | Sat - 10.30am

Price:   £7.70 inc bf.

To book this show please click here.

Posted on Tuesday 27 February

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