“I am sitting in a room. I get paid to do what I love. I couldn’t sleep at night if I wasn’t doing something with that position.” Naturally and notoriously outspoken, Denise Gough shot to fame in 2015’s sell-out People, Places and Things, captivating audiences with her febrile, fragile rendition of the drug-addled Emma. Now, Gough sees her success as a platform from which to protest. Her latest role, in Angels in America, is suitably political. First performed in 1991, the play became an instant classic, a blistering portrait of Reagan-era America, suffering its horrific epidemic of AIDS. At the heart of the story is the figure of Roy Cohn, Joe McCarthy’s cohort and, also, Donald Trump’s lawyer. As history rears its head, Gough sees Angels as an important reminder of a past that is often overlooked by a younger generation widely accustomed to social progress. As the Trump administration threatens to regress hard-won rights, the play honours those who fought, and died, for these rights. “Young gay men and women can see whose shoulders they are standing on: it’s really powerful and healing.”
Read the full interview here.