Get to know the people behind the puppets: Meet Allan Girod

Allan Girod, Performer

Allan discovered performance by accident whilst teaching in the small Wheatbelt community of Dowerin. The experience ignited a flame. He has since worked successfully as a storyteller, actor, theatre clown, and independent theatre maker. Allan also writes, performs and produces solo theatre for international touring under the name flaming locomotive. His main stage credits include You Once Said Yes (Look Left Look Right and Perth International Arts Festival), SPARK London Storytelling (UK), Barefaced Stories (Perth), Corteo (Cirque du Soleil), Cinderella (Perth City Ballet and Quarry Amphitheatre), The Threepenny Opera (WA Opera Studio), Dealer’s Choice by Patrick Marber (Red Ryder Productions and Perth Theatre Company) and the National Tour of Road Train by kompany M. On screen, Allan appeared in the Channel 9 series Lockie Leonard 1 and 2. As part of the 2016 Fringe World Festival, he launched The Flaming Locomotive, an independent venue providing new opportunities for artists in an intimate theatre setting. It won the Best New Program Award in 2016 and expanded for the 2017 season.

The Rules of Summer is Allan’s first time working in puppetry. He has been a proud member of Equity since 2000.

Where are you from?
I spent my first year in Oodnadatta. I don’t remember anything, of course, but I feel the vastness of central Australia is in my soul. I also lived in Dampier for a while; one of my earliest memories is of visiting Millstream-Chichester National Park (originally home of the Yindjibarndi and Ngarluma people). Although I grew up in Perth, my heart will always be in the Pilbara.

What character do you play in Rules of Summer/What do you like about playing your character?
As an ‘Agent of the Imagination’ I play the Big Brother and what I like most about the character is how it allows me to relive some wonderful moments from my childhood. I grew up in Perth at a similar time to Shaun Tan, and so much of his story is relatable. I had a big brother I looked up to and many adventures wandering the desolate neighbourhood.

Which of the senses could you never give up and why?
Sight. I love pictures and looking at things. So much of my time is spent daydreaming, watching people and things and how they work. If I’d never been able to watch the world, I’d have no dreams to picture in my mind and I would feel lost.

What is a rule that you never break?
Never leave home without checking pockets.

What is your always rule?
Always eat everything on your plate.

Why did you want to become a performer?
I am a very quiet person, I haven’t always found it easy to fit in. I discovered performing on stage by accident. I feel a sense of belonging in front of the audience that I don’t get in everyday life. It is also a place where through imagination anything is possible – I find that a lot of fun.

Who inspires you?
People who have faced struggles to find what they enjoy and anyone who makes something. I admire the skill, dedication and patience it takes to be a creator.

If I wanted to become a performer what advice would you give to me?
To be a performer you have to give a lot of yourself. Performers I know who really connect with an audience open their heart, are accepting of difference and respect others. I think it helps if you can find joy and wonderment in the little everyday things around you. Definitely travel to places where the people and cultures are different to what you know. Learn to trust yourself by being courageous, new and scared.

Rules of Summer // World Premiere

DATE: 23 September – 8 October
VENUE: Dolphin Theatre, UWA
BOOK TICKETS online or call 9335 5044