Kate Nash: “There’s not much professionalism in the music industry”

Posted On By Director

There’s no denying that the plot driving Kate Nash’s new film, Coffee Wars, is a little, well, out there. But the second she received the script, Nash says, she immediately knew it was the perfect film for her.

In the comedy, Nash plays Jo, a coffee aficionado struggling to keep her vegan coffee shop open despite being one of the best baristas in the UK. Her one chance at keeping her business alive is winning the World Barista Championships, where she’ll go up against other coffeemakers using full-fat dairy in their drinks, which Jo is adamantly against.

“As soon as I read the script I could really see myself as the character. I just knew who Jo was,” Nash explains over Zoom. “She’s headstrong. She doesn’t necessarily think before she speaks. She doesn’t think of the consequences and gets in trouble. All of that was relatable.”

What Nash really connected to, though, was Coffee Wars’ environmental and animal welfare messages and how it delivers them through comedy. “It’s such an effective way to explore these themes,” insists Nash.

Putting its money where its mouth is, Veg Good Films, the studio behind Coffee Wars, has announced that all proceeds from the film will be donated to environmental and animal welfare charities. “The funders of the film are very passionate animal rights and vegan activists,” says Nash. “I’ve never heard of that happening before. It’s so admirable and unique and exciting to be a part of.”

It makes sense, then, that it was a non-negotiable for the studio that a vegan actress play Jo. Nash moved from being vegetarian to vegan around six years ago, after being inspired by Bong Joon-ho’s Netflix science-fantasy comedy Okja, which revolves around a genetically modified super pig being hunted down.

kate nash coffee wars

Nash as Jo in Coffee Wars

“It was just such a fun movie. It mixed action and comedy and still made fun of the vegan messaging,” she explains. “Having a sense of humor is such a great way to get to people. I literally am vegan because of a movie. It hit me at a specific time and I just really got the message. So I know film can be really impactful.

“We’re so lucky to be creatives and work on our passions, so it’s great to be able to do something meaningful, too. We’re in such a bombastic capitalist society right now. Let’s make choices that have a positive impact. Being vegan is a really easy thing to do.”

While Nash is largely recognised as an actress now, if you didn’t catch her in Netflix’s hit series GLOW, you may well know her best for her nearly two-decade-long musical career.

In 2005, Nash fell down the stairs and broke her foot. In the aftermath, she decided to record some music to pass the time, uploading her songs to MySpace (remember a time when social media was actually good for something?). Her online popularity saw Nash land a manager and soon begin to get greater exposure, resulting in the hit single Foundations and her debut album, Made Of Bricks, reaching number one in the UK charts.

But Nash has always been as passionate about acting as she is about music. She initially applied to several drama colleges and universities, only to be rejected. After landing a place at the prestigious Brit School, Nash studied theatre, which then fed into her music. “It really impacted my songwriting. It changed me as a songwriter. It made Made Of Bricks so theatrical.”

coffee wars

Nash with the cast of Coffee Wars

While Nash has continued to make music, releasing four albums between 2007 and 2018 with a fifth studio album, Nine Sad Symphonies, due out later this year, since making her feature film debut in 2012’s Greetings From Tim Buckley, her acting career has gone from strength to strength. Nash’s most prominent role during this time was as Rhonda ‘Britannica’ Richardson in all three seasons of GLOW, a comedy-drama set in the world of 1980s professional women’s wrestling.

“I feel like both feed each other,” responds Nash when asked how her music career has impacted her acting efforts. What she has really responded to, she says, is how professional and organised the film and television industries are, especially in comparison to working as a musician.

“There’s not much professionalism in the music industry. It’s a boundary-less world,” she admits. “When you’re on tour as a musician, you don’t know what city you’re in or where you are. People idolise musicians that drink and do drugs. Everyone wants to be part of that and party all the time. But it’s your career. It’s your job. People expect you to just get through it. You’re not taught the skills to be professional.”

Nash believes that she’s developed more of those skills through her work in film and television – especially as she’s working alongside a huge cast and crew reliant on her being prepared and on time. As Coffee Wars’ lead actor, Nash had even more responsibility. Not just because she’s in pretty much every scene of the movie, but also when it came to her co-stars, including Freddie Fox (Slow Horses, The Pursuit of Love) and Saoirse-Monica Jackson (Derry Girls), and the production staff.

“I wanted to be able to look out for other people. I wanted to create good camaraderie on set,” she says. “Luckily, we had such a fun cast. We just laughed so much. You have to balance your energy. You need to make sure that you’re actually getting enough rest so that you can do the workload.”

With Coffee Wars now out for the world to see, Nash has switched her focus back to music. She’s even relocated from Los Angeles to London in an attempt to reconnect with her roots. “I haven’t lived in London for a while but I’m back surrounded by the London music community. Music is my heart and soul. It’s in my blood. It fuels me in a specific way. I’m just excited to be working on music again.”

Coffee Wars is available to rent on Prime Video now.

Read more: Bridgerton’s Luke Thompson on privacy and the power of theatre

The post Kate Nash: “There’s not much professionalism in the music industry” appeared first on Luxury London.

Lascia un commento