11 Questions with the cast of The Bear / The Proposal – George Ikediashi

Returning to the Young Vic after Tobias and the Angel in 2006, you may also recognise George Ikediashi from  Threepenny Opera, Porgy & Bess or his fabulous cabaret character Le Gateau Chocolat. 11 Questions with George below… 

George Ikediashi in The Bear The Proposal at the Young Vic © Ellie Kurttz

George Ikediashi in The Bear / The Proposal at the Young Vic.     Photo: Ellie Kurttz

1) Describe your stage presence in three emojis or words?


2) What’s it been like working on a Young Vic Genesis show?

Thrilling, exciting and utterly exhausting. It was been a true collaborative effort with every moment spent mining Chekhov for his truth and Leo, mining the performers and themselves, for ours.

3) What is one thing you would like people to know about the gender-fierce*/gender queer community? 

To keep questioning and challenging your preconceptions. The fluidity might seem challenging and counter intuitive, in a world that championed and drilled in blue for boys and pink for girls but the rewards of embracing? Liberation.

In the words of en vogue “free your mind and the rest will follow”

4) What are you usually doing 10 minutes before a show begins?

Warming up, doing scales, and or finishing make up. Here though, I’m sat on stage in a cubby hole, waiting to come on as the audience are let in.

5) What is your favourite part of the rehearsal process?

The hope and the boundless ambition showcased and discussed excitedly in the first couple of days – you dive in, get lost, it gets hard, mushy, confusing… you check back and somehow, some of that ambition has materialised and evolved to an unfathomable and interesting place and you’re like – “ah, that what the work was for”

6) What did you want to be growing up?

A lawyer. Ha.

7) If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Um…. no. Making me Sophie’s Choice my food?  You’re ridiculous. Nope, not even hypothetically.

8) What was it that first got you interested in the theatre?

Life. Mine & others. “There is no greater agony that bearing an untold story inside you” – Maya Angelou

9) What’s your favourite play you’ve seen, read or worked on?

This changes so often as I feel it very important to facilitate your growth by consuming a lot of art. So my current answer’s Love at the National; the bleakest depiction of our social care problem. I don’t know when the tears came or when they stopped. It was deeply affecting and painfully human.

10) If you could be a superhero who would it be and why?

Easy. X-Men’s Phoenix; the hair, the costume, the powers. Most importantly though, the metaphor; to rise from the ashes. To embrace the idea that from mistakes, pain, suffering… something beautiful is born. We’re not perfect. You mightn’t succeed at first but learn, grow and rise again.

11) Would you rather have the hiccups for the rest of your life, or always feel like you have to sneeze but not be able to?

First the food question, now this? You’re ridiculous.

George stars in The Bear / The Proposal   which runs 15 – 25 Mar in the Young Vic’s Clare. Tickets for this production are all sold out but you are welcome to join our returns queues from an hour before each performance. Find more information on The Bear / The Proposal here



The Young Vic are looking to meet performers, cabaret artists and actors for a production of Chekhov’s The Bear and The Proposal.  The production will be directed by Lucy J Skilbeck as part of the Genesis Future Directors Award. We are interested in representing and exploring the diversity of queer experience and the show will be performed by a gender-fierce company of queer, non-binary, transgender, agender and LGBTQIA identifying artists. It’s not for the fainthearted. 

If you would like to be considered for an initial audition please email willyoumarryme@youngvic.org (by Wednesday 30th November) with your CV, a picture of yourself (one in and one out of performance make up if applicable), a brief outline of your interests and experience (no more than 200 words) and selected website/ youtube / vimeo / spotlight links.

The Bear/The Proposal will run for 12 performances in the Clare Theatre at the Young Vic as part of our 2017 season.

We look forward to hearing from you.


The Bear/The Proposal
Plays by Anton Chekhov

Translated by Michael Frayn
Directed by Lucy J Skilbeck
Casting by Sam Jones CDG

Rehearsals 20th Feb – 21st March
Performances 22nd March –  1st April