During this time of social distancing and dark theatres, Vancouver Presents continues to check in with our arts community members to find out how they are staying creative and managing during the pandemic.
Today we check in with Vancouver performer and musician Veda Hille.
1. How are you staying creative during the pandemic?
Well, I’m doing the usual stuff: writing, practicing, wandering around, talking out loud to myself. In terms of new pandemic creations, I’ve been pretty into making things with filo pastry, and my son and I have been doing some stop motion animation together.
2. What’s the one thing getting you through?
Family games! There’s this game called Patchwork that I’m obsessed with. And cribbage.
3. How are you staying in contact with family and friends who are not in your bubble?
I’ve adopted the Zoom lifestyle, like everyone else. I’ve been working on my Hollywood squares party tricks.
4. What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned so far during the pandemic?
Do not let the dishes pile up.
5. What do you feel the most grateful for right now?
I love the little village of East Van even more now.
6. What is something you are doing now that you don’t normally?
Coveting fancy face masks.
7. What skill have you developed since the pandemic started?
Apparently, I’m much better at snoring now.
8. What have you missed the most?
Dance parties, music parties, dinner parties.
9. Your #1 pandemic survival tip.
Oh, just get out there and walk around. Also, make something or mend something. Little satisfactions.
10. Your biggest indulgence since the pandemic started.
I’m still buying clothes, like, going out clothes. In case I suddenly can go out, I guess.
11. What have you stockpiled?
Ginger gummy bears.
12. What have you been reading?
Musician bios: Nile Rodgers Le Freak, Chris Franz Remain In Love. Looking for a new one now, maybe the new Luc Sante which isn’t a musician bio but a slice of time book.
13. What have you been watching?
Great Canadian Baking Show and Love on the Spectrum. And great docs, like White Riot, Crip Camp. I’m really enjoying seeing footage of activism in the 1970s, very inspiring.
14. What have you been listening to?
Phoebe Bridgers, Linton Kwesi Johnson, and the Adventure Time soundtrack.
15. What are you doing for exercise?
I started this thing called Gyrotonic! I’m all circular now, like a gyroscope.
16. The one thing you haven’t been able to live without?
Pastries from Livia Sweets.
17. Do-it-yourself haircut or the natural look?
I just wait patiently for my expert hairdresser to make me look good. Kalai at Field Trip, thank you, thank you, thank you.
18. Night owl or early riser?
19. Will you be the first out as restrictions are gradually lifted or taking a wait-and-see attitude?
I’m a late adopter at the best of times. Takes me a while to shift gears.
20. What’s the first thing you will do when this is all over?
Hug you all. All of you. I mean it.
Meet Veda Hille
Veda Hille has been writing music, making records, and performing internationally since 1992. She is a classically trained pianist, art school drop-out, performance curator, self-taught singer, theatre interloper, and independent artist.
She has released 21 albums, the latest batch being Love Waves, a collection of love songs written in Berlin, and cast recordings for Onegin and King Arthur’s Night. Other recent theatre projects include music for The Bakkhai with a book by Anne Carson, and Little Volcano, a solo show featuring Veda playing songs and telling stories from her long life in music.
Next, Veda will be working on the eighth round of the East Van Panto and writing a new musical with Amiel Gladstone.
Little Volcano is set to tour internationally whenever that’s possible, but in the meantime, the live album of the show will be released in October 2020, and Veda will have many online performances throughout the next season.