So, obviously, I chatted to them.
JOHN: Your mother and father are both in showbiz…
MADDY: It’s weird. I don’t think either of us expected to be here doing this. It just sort of happened.
MARINA: I always liked to sing and dance and be a monkey slave for people. And Maddy did that too. But then I went to drama school to kind of pursue the acting career.
MADDY: And it was my godfather actually who sent me to clown school. I was working in PR in London and then I ran away to clown school in Paris.
JOHN: Who is your godfather?
MADDY: Alan Rickman.
JOHN: So Alan Rickman decided you shouldn’t be an actor.
MADDY: I should be a clown, yeah. Well, I was actually frickin’ lucky to have him in my life. I kiss the ground he walked on. One day I told him about Gaulier and he was like: What are you doing? You have to go.
JOHN (TO MARINA): But he didn’t tell you to go to clown school.
MARINA: No, he didn’t. I think he was quite happy I went to drama school. He was very supportive. He came to every single show I did there.
JOHN: Was your father a performer originally?
MARINA: No, but he’s so funny he should be.
MADDY: He’s just so funny. An English gentleman.
MARINA: That’s what’s great about our parents. My mum is very…
MADDY: One is very American and one is very British.
MARINA: Yeah. Two different characters. So I think Maddy and I have a really nice balance in our comedy because of that. It can be a bit showy and big… but then be very British.
JOHN: So you have decided to be sketch comedians… An art form that has died or is dying or is no longer popular…
MARINA: We’re bringing it back!
MADDY: If you wanted to categorise our show, I guess it would go into ‘sketch comedy’, but it’s not standard. Someone reviewed us by saying that the sketches start off quite sketchy but end in a sort of bizarre, uncomfortable clown world that doesn’t make much sense and is completely absurd. We really like being quite dark and…
MARINA: Our aim for every sketch is to start quite normal and structured and then shock as much as we can by taking it somewhere dark.
JOHN: Is there a single thread to the show?
MARINA: Yes. To do with us being siblings and rivals and me thinking I’m a lot better than Maddy because I have professional, classical training and Maddy saying: C’mon. No-one wants to see that! So it’s taking the piss out of that: I’m classically-trained! Everyone wants to see me!
MADDY: And I’m like the idiot, I guess.
MARINA: Yeah. But then you win… a lot!… Because no-one does want to see…
MADDY: And we’re taking the piss out of our actual selves.
MARINA: Completely. We’ve had to lose all sense of dignity.
JOHN: I’m not keen on dignity. I like a bit of quirky.
MARINA: I guess there’s the story of fisting up the arsehole in the film I was in.
MARINA: I fisted a man up the arsehole to split into my male identical alien twin.
MADDY: It was a Neil Gaiman film.
MARINA: The title was How To Talk To Girls at Parties.
JOHN: Ah!… So… In your Siblings show, are you playing characters or being yourselves?
MARINA: It’s really hard to explain.
MADDY: The majority of the show, we are characters.
MARINA: But we are ourselves at times – a heightened version of ourselves.
JOHN: You previewed the Siblings show at the Brighton Fringe.
MARINA: We did one show where everyone in the audience was just with us. You know that moment when you’re all on the wave together? We thought: Amazing! Wow! The next night we were sold out but fake blood spilt backstage so Maddy and I were, inexplicably, covered in fake blood for the entire show. People were not only laughing but also really concerned…
MADDY:…that we had stabbed ourselves backstage.
MARINA: I looked over at Maddy at one point and there was a gentle drop of blood running down her nose. I thought: This is really ruining the element of comedy.
MADDY: There was fake blood on someone’s face in the third row. We don’t know how it got there.
JOHN: Did the person in the third row know they had fake blood on them?
MADDY & MARINA (TOGETHER): No!
MARINA: We thought: Let’s just not say anything.
JOHN: The worst thing is that, for at least the next three years, you are going to be referred-to as Ruby Wax’s daughters rather than yourselves. That must be frustrating.
MARINA: My personal reaction is that I’m not at all ashamed that she is who she is. I think she’s amazing. And both our parents have been so supportive.
MADDY: It’s hard, maybe, when you know people have come in with a pre-conceived idea about your comedy or you as a person.
MARINA: We hope they will leave liking US.
MADDY: Liking or disliking US.