Wednesday, July 17, 2019

SiriusXM (2019)

July 16, 2019: 

Tom Hiddleston does not waste anytime. He watched two Finals matches at Wimbledon on Sunday, flew in to New York City on Monday, started rehearsals for Betrayal on Tuesday. Somehow in there he managed to squeeze in a visit to SiriusXM radio. 

Tom sat down with host Larry Flick. He posted a snippet on Facebook

The full 24-minute interview with Tom Hiddleston is available on SiriusXM. 

  • (1:20) They talk about Tom's other theatre work, specifically Coriolanus. "The theatre is in my bones."
  • (5:30) They talk about Betrayal and making it accessible to today's audiences. "At the heart of it, it's about relationships and how complex relationships are... What's so extraordinary about the way Pinter handles the scenario is the betrayal is not simply of the husband by the wife. The betrayal is of the friend by the other friend. Or of the loved by the lover. There are so many layers of betrayal and ultimately each character, perhaps, betrays themselves. 
  • (7:20) They talk about Tom's affinity for language. "When you're a child you don't know why you are good at things. I wasn't particularly - in fact all all - gifted at mathematics or the sciences but as soon as we started learning languages I found that I had an affinity for it. I understood it... I am fascinated by language as our primary tool of externalizing the many complex feelings and thoughts we have as human beings." 
  • (9:45) Do you hear music when you speak? "With Shakespeare, certainly." Tom then recites several Shakespeare lines with his funky-fresh iambic pentameter beat. 
  • (11:45) They discuss the infamous Pinter Pause and how to hold that silence as an actor. "In life if the stakes are high both characters have to be very careful about what they say. And sometimes a silence is when you understand how much is at stake between these two people... as an actor, if you can suffuse that silence with those high stakes the next thing I say is going to really matter, and you're really listening to me. And I'm either going to save this relationship or we're both going to walk away. I think most people can really connect to that. When words really matter you have to be careful choosing how you say something. It becomes a charged, energetic silence. It's not a dead air." 
  • (14:33) How do you carry your connection with language into your real life?  "(Acting) is a representation of something alive, something very real, and honest about the experience of being alive. So, the demand on the actor is a demand of presence. You can't be somewhere else. You have to be here. Now. In this moment. In this room. I think that's why the theatre will always endure because we live in quite a fragmented world. With many demands on our attention. And there's something quite honest about the theatre in that way. That there's all these people sitting in one room, in one space, watching the same thing. And you can feel when it's present. It has a unique vitality. 
  • (17:01) They discuss the difference between reading a script for television or film versus reading a script for a play. And also, Tom's wish list for future roles. (This section is available in the film clip above) 
  • (22:30) When you're playing a character that has been played countless times before how do you find your own voice in it? "I think it's about connection - to try to be brave enough to connect deeply with what's being investigated in the writing... What the feeling is to try to connect very personally to it and say other people may have expressed this differently but this is how it feels for me. If I had lived this life - this is how it might read in my body." 


Tom was also a guest on SiriusXM's Broadway Names with Julie James. 

  • (1:00) Tom talking about finally making his Broadway debut. "It feels like a dream. You can't help but to cast your mind back to being a child and dreaming of being an actor. People talk about Broadway - the tradition here and the community, and the standard and the quality of the work. It has not come into my life before this moment so it's very, very exciting."
  • (1:40) Tom talks about his stage background. "That's where I started ultimately. I trained as a stage actor. I spent the first four or five years of my career in the theatre. The film stuff has been amazing and one of the great surprises of my life, and I've loved it. But I never expected it. Strangely enough I think some of my theatrical experiences have really carried me through those film experiences. Theatre's in my bones, it's in my blood. It was the thing that really turned me on to acting in the first place, and I believe in it. I just believe in the theatre. I think it's an extraordinary, powerful form."
  • (13:45) Is there a preshow ritual? "We do have a moment of just being there and connecting to it. 90-minutes of this material is quite intense but I think that's part of the play's power. It's a very rigorous, intense look at these moments when the most intimate relationships of our lives break apart. How that can be shattering and have repercussions further down the line. And we know that it's our responsibility to deliver that."
  • (16:20) How do you tell a story in reverse either on stage or screen? "It's fascinating because you can lead the audience through it and then you find that they get ahead of you or they get ahead of the character. And Pinter is so generous because he lets the audience in on the knowledge before some of the characters. He lays it all out in the first two scenes. He says this is what happened and... I think the audience starts to look forward to. It's rather like a Russian Doll - you know it's going to get smaller but you're interested in what it looks like when you open it."
  • (18:13) Are you excited to be in New York for an extended period? "I've never lived in New York for longer than two or three weeks at a time. I'm so excited. I really am. This city - it has the most unique energy of any city in the world. I'm looking forward to the changing of the seasons - summer into fall, winter - and settling in. 

I expect to see a lot more promotion for Betrayal Broadway than we saw for Betrayal Pinter. This is the Broadway debut for all of the main actors -Tom Hiddleston, Zawe Ashton, and Charlie Cox - and is opening during the slowest time on Broadway. Tom even took the historic step of posting a selfie on his social media and adding a ticket link to his Instagram. His instagram link had been to the East Africa Famine Appeal since March 2017. 

The only other show opening during this time period is Sea Wall/A Life with Jake Gyllenhaal and Tom Sturridge. It is very possible to see all or some of the Betrayal Broadway cast at their opening night on August 8. Jake co-starred with Zawe in Velvet Buzzsaw and the two shows share the same publicity team. I'm here for a Loki and Mysterio photo-op. 



For SiriusXM, Tom Hiddleston pulled a full Ralph Lauren/Louboutin repeat of the outfit he wore to the London Infinity War Fan Event



Sea Wall / A Life


  1. Yes, he did! I can personally attest that that is the same suit that he wore to the Infinity War Fan event in London... where I first met him in person (at the after-party).

  2. Thank you for sharing. The interview sounds lovely, I‘m watching it on Thursday. And yes a Loki/Mysterio Photo Op would be awesome!