They are currently rated as one of the hottest comedy stage acts by national critics, Broadway Baby. Their debut at the Edinburgh Fringe garnered four-star reviews, and they’ve been invited back to do no less than 21 dates this year. And all this just a matter of months since they formed, post graduation in 2014.
Q: How did you get into acting?
Cal. I did an A Level in drama but chose to do something more scientific at university (geography) because I thought it would be more useful in the long term. That’s what happens when 18-year olds make decisions that will affect the rest of their lives!
Adam. We all met through the University of Plymouth Amateur Dramatics (UPAD) society, all being on the committee in our final year. That’s when things became really interesting…
Cal. We used to write these enormous productions with, like, 28 characters. We wanted to get everyone in the society involved, regardless of ability, and in our third year we had more than 100 people involved in a six-hour production that consisted of six different shows.
Q: So what inspired you to form your own company?
Adam. It all started with Edinburgh…
Cal. Plum and I grew up in Stratford, with this enormous Shakespearean influence. And we were writing a play called Shakespeare’s Avengers Assembleth, in which we took these iconic characters – Shakespeare in the Nick Fury role, Romeo, Hamlet, Lady Macbeth, Ophelia and Brutus – and we smashed them together with as little subtlety and tact as possible. And Plum said he wanted to take it to Edinburgh.
Plum. I called this company and by chance they had just had a cancellation. They gave us the opportunity, and it was perfect because they had a 70-seat venue, and we sold out in more than half of our shows. When we got back we received a commission to write, produce and perform some shows for the Outpost Theatre Festival, and it was at that point we decided to form the company.
Q: Where does the name Drake’s Drummers come from?
Cal. Well, I was in Francis Drake Hall, and I’d heard about Drake’s Drum on a visit to Buckfast Abbey, and the myth that it will sound whenever England is in need. And we've loved living in the South West so much that we wanted an element of folklore in there.
Plum. It’s not that we’re egotists and narcissists whatsoever!