Home » Interviews » Interview with Ruta Gedmintas – Unfaithful, The Strain, The Tudors…

Interview with Ruta Gedmintas – Unfaithful, The Strain, The Tudors…

Unfaithful - Ruta Gedmintas and Matthew Lewis Photo Darren Bell
Unfaithful – Ruta Gedmintas and Matthew Lewis Photo Darren Bell

Following the critically acclaimed, sold out productions of The Dazzle and Bug at Found111, Emily Dobbs Productions is thrilled to present the London premiere of Unfaithful, a blackly comic new play starring Sean Campion (The Borgias, Stones in his Pockets), Niamh Cusack (Heartbeat, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time), Ruta Gedmintas (The Strain, The Tudors) and Matthew Lewis (Harry Potter film series, The Syndicate).

Tom is enjoying a quiet pint after work. Tara lies awake whilst her boyfriend finishes his shift. When their paths cross, a chain of events is sparked that reveal the unspoken desires and regrets of two relationships on the brink.

Sharply written by award-winning playwright Owen McCafferty (Scenes From The Big Picture, Shoot The Crow) Unfaithful questions what it means to be lovers, partners and people. Directed by Adam Penford (Watership Down, A Small Family Business).

Unfaithful runs for a 6-week season at the pop-up venue, the original site of the Central St Martins School of Art, at 111 Charing Cross Road, from Thursday 25th August 2016.

Ruta Gedmintas chats about her career and Unfaithful.

Ruta Gedmintas
Ruta Gedmintas

Q: Our previous interview with you was when you were in the West End starring as Astrid in Backbeat. What are some of your favourite memories from being in the show?
Ruta: I am a big Beatles fan. Getting to hear those songs every night, sung so well by my talented friends was brilliant. To pretend to live in that world was a pretty mesmerising experience as a fan of the band. Andy Knott embodied John Lennon so well.

Q: You play the role of Dutch in the TV series The Strain. Can you give us an insight as to what it is like being a part of this popular production?
Ruta: It’s an incredibly fun and generous set, with a wonderful cast and crew who make every day creative and interesting. The sets are intricately detailed and on a huge scale, it’s a feast for an actors imagination. I feel very lucky to be part of it.

Q: Aired earlier this year (2016), you play the role of Sophie in Stag – a British black comedy television serial. Can you tell us about Stag?
Ruta: Again, there was a really excellent team behind this. Sophie was the reveal, so the secrecy surrounding my role in the production was military grade. I was transported to and from my trailer in disguise, even the actors were kept in the dark until the moment we were on set together. This level of secrecy in the “internet spoiler” world was very cool.

Q: You play the role of Belle (an animal loving neighbour) in A Street Cat Named Bob (film) (Due to be released in November 2016 ). What can you tell us about this production and working with the cast?
Ruta: James and Bob’s story is incredibly inspiring and uplifting, especially now, when the news we watch every day seems perpetually negative. It’s wonderful to know the simplest of connections, began the process of drawing a man out of his complicated and at times incredibly sad circumstances. James is a great human being. I am so thankful to have spent time with him and Bob and to be involved in telling their story on screen. Luke Treadaway plays James wonderfully, its a really moving performance. It’s always wonderful to have Joanne Froggatt around, she is always excellent and Anthony Head is such a treat. I have a feeling we will all be upstaged by Bob. But. It is his story.

Q: You are back on the London stage from August 2016 at Found111 in Unfaithful. What appealed to you most about being a part of the production?
Ruta: Found 111 is an intimate black box theatre, that feels like an incredibly creative space. The cast is wonderful. I have adored Niamh Cusack forever. The writing is packed full of the nuances of a relationship. It’s simultaneously very funny and painful. Adam Penford is a really insightful and exciting director to work with.

Q: What can you tell us about the production?
Ruta: It’s a play about two couples dealing with their connection to each other and themselves. It’s a play about sex, money, and the power we give and take in our relationships. It looks at our search for truth, and what being ‘unfaithful’ really means, and what might drive a person to cross that line.

Q: What can you tell us about your character and how she fits into the storyline?
Ruta: Tara is a woman dissatisfied with her life. She works in a supermarket and feels her life is going nowhere. She is unhappy. She wants more, something different, but is unsure of how to get it. She is struggling to communicate with her boyfriend Peter, and makes some choices which alter them both. Each character is dealing with their own personal struggle and eventually, unwittingly they all become entangled in each others dilemma.

Unfaithful Rehearsals: Ruta Gedmintas with Matthew Lewis - Photo credit Marc Brenner
Unfaithful Rehearsals: Ruta Gedmintas with Matthew Lewis – Photo credit Marc Brenner

Q: Why should everyone get along to see Unfaithful?
Ruta: It’s a play that rings true, in terms of how deeply we as humans all need connection and understanding. Everyone struggles, everyone fights. There is a lot of humour to be found in the most mundane or the most painful of times. I think people will relate to these characters and perhaps come out with a sense of hope.

Q: Unfaithful runs for a 6 week season. What next for you in 2016 and looking ahead to 2017?
Ruta: Season 3 of The Strain is coming out in September and A Streetcat Named Bob will be released in November. Hopefully we will return for another season of The Strain.

Q: And finally: Favourite film?
Ruta: Pretty impossible to narrow it down to one. Can I have five?
Dancer in the dark
Standby me
Back to the future.
Spirited away.
Baz Lurhman’s Romeo and Juliet – it messes with the text, but the emotional journeys are so visceral and the music is brilliant. Oh. And Anything by Pixar. So that’s loads.

Q: Favourite stage production?
Ruta: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time. It was beautiful, fun, and powerful both emotionally and visually. You really felt transported into Christopher’s world. Marianne directed a beautiful play that was an incredible ‘experience’.
I just watched Yerma last night too and I’m still traumatised. Which is weirdly a good thing – Billie Piper for president.

Q: What do you like to do to chill out?
Ruta: I like painting. And yoga. Things that connect you to yourself. I’m aware how cliché that sounds but I’m now coming to terms with it. My name is Ruta Gedmintas; and I am a yoga-going-vegan.
Asides from that I like to just be with my with my nearest, but i don’t get to do much of it, so it’s precious.

Q: Any any message to the many that are following your career?
Ruta: “Hello… Weird isn’t it?

Ruta Gedmintas Read our previous interview with Ruta Gedmintas
Ruta Gedmintas’s stage credits include Backbeat (Duke of York’s), What Every Woman Knows (Royal Exchange), Primary (Hampstead). Television credits include The Strain (FX), The Tudors (BBC), The Borgias (Showtime), Ripper Street (Tiger Aspect), The Guilty (ITV) and Lip Service (Kudos). On film, in 2016 she will star in A Street Cat Named Bob (Sony), The Incident (BFI) and has previously starred in Tonight You’re Mine (Sigma Films).”

LISTINGS INFORMATION
Unfaithful
by Owen McCafferty

FOUND111
111 Charing Cross Rd
London WC2H 0DT
Thursday 25 August – Saturday 8 October
Press night: Wednesday 31 August at 7.45pm
Monday – Saturday at 7.45pm
Wednesday matinee at 3.00pm
Saturday matinee at 3.00pm

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Author

  • Neil Cheesman

    First becoming involved in an online theatre business in 2005 and launching londontheatre1.com in September 2013. Neil writes reviews and news articles, and has interviewed over 150 actors and actresses from the West End, Broadway, film, television, and theatre. Follow Neil on Twitter @LondonTheatre1

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