Interview: Aya Kawakami

What is your greatest fear?

Being attacked by frogs. Yes, seriously. When I was 8 or so, living in Singapore, a massive bullfrog jumped on me while I was bicycling home in the evening. I am still insanely afraid of frogs, all frogs. Yes, even the tiny cute ones. No, do not ever bring me a frog. I will kill you.

What is your greatest extravagance?

Wine, I have a wine fridge in my shoebox apartment. I don’t even want to know how much I have spent on wine.

What is your favorite journey? 

My favorite journey was my first trip to Greece. It was not only one of the most beautiful places I have been to, but the first place I went without my family as a young person. It was exhilarating.

Which living person do you most despise? 

Donald Drumpf a.k.a the Twittler.

Which Japanese words or phrases do you most overuse?

ほうよね。and じゃろ?I’m from Hiroshima.

What or who is the greatest love of your life?

The stage. Every since I was a small child, I have lived for the stage. I love the excitement of backstage, the intensity of rehearsals, the process of creating a work of art, creating a character. It’s the greatest rush of all. I am totally addicted.

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be? 

I would want to get rid of my addiction to cheese…

What do you consider your greatest achievement? 

I don’t know if I consider it an achievement, rather a challenge I’ve set for myself, but starting a theatre company. I can’t say it’s an achievement as it has yet to be a success, but it was a scary first step and I am proud of myself for taking it. Yes, this is a shameless plug for THEATRE IRIDESCENCE!! Check us out on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter… ok I am done.

What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?

Anything related to giving an exam. Marking, invigilating, prepping… especially the first two. Death, it is death.

What do you most value in your friends?
Their kind honesty. The people I consider my closest friends are always compassionate but honest. That is true love.

Who are your favorite writers?

Maya Angelou, Phillip Pullman, Madeleine L’Engle,

Who is your favorite hero of fiction? 

Lyra in His Dark Materials (the first book is the Golden Compass, which many know)

What historical figure do you most identify with?

Napoleon- we are both short and have a weird fear of an animal (he was afraid of cats, I am… well, see question 1)

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