Go Deeper

Philly Fringe Vital Stats: Leila Ghaznavi

Posted September 6th, 2012

Silken Veils is replete with…veils.

Watching The Hunger Games with my parents on Friday night (livin’ the dream, folks), I was reminded, at least in the political sense, of puppets; what Suzanne Collins’ fiction thinly veils is the question, are the impoverished just pawns in the state’s plan to keep the rich, rich and the poor, poor and ever-servile? I don’t know. I was too distracted by Elizabeth Banks’s fancy-turned-freakish costumes. Her eyelashes were butterflies!

Leila Ghaznavi eschews the political puppet and goes right for the real thing; her Philly Fringe Silken Veils uses marionettes to tell a contemporary Iranian tale of a woman, and a marriage, and a war. After a recent run at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe the performance was ‘tweet-crowned’ a MUST SEE by The Stage Edinburgh, and nominated for best new work. Let’s hope for another successful run in Philly; or as Banks’s character says with a tongue-in-cheek she’s too bedazzled to feel, “May the odds be ever in your favor.”

Read Leila’s Vitals after the jump.

Name: Leila Ghaznavi.

Age: 33.

Show Title: Silken Veils.

Explain your performance in 2 sentences. To an 8-year-old. Love, heartache, triumph, and a whole lot of puppets. It’s a show that asks is love truly worth all the heartache it can bring?

What was your favorite toy as a kid? My little ponies!

Did you go to college or grad school? If so, where? California Institute of the Arts in Los Angeles. I got a MFA in acting and that’s where I fell in love with puppets. I got a BFA in music composition from Bryn Mawr College.

Favorite coffee shop? What do you order? Chapterhouse on Bainbridge. I order a Mocha.

Marvel Comics, or DC? Marvel…duh.

What’s the worst piece of advice you ever received? Did you follow it? I’m not sure about the worst but the best piece of advice I ever got was, “Never do anything for a man once that you aren’t willing to do for the rest of your life.” I try to follow it, but then inevitably I go soft and clean a guy’s fridge and then where am I? Fridge cleaner for life!

Do you have relatives more famous than you? I do. I’m the fifth cousin of Stonewall Jackson.

Silken Veils runs September 11, 12, 13, 14, and 15 at 7:00 pm at 2nd Stage at the Adrienne, 2030 Sansom Street. $10.

–Audrey McGlinchy