interview by Mark Sanders
Rebecca Reid is a London-born actress and performer. Perhaps most recognizable from her recurring role as Nadia on the hit FOX comedy "New Girl" she is currently starring in the Comedy Central sitcom I Live With Models.
Rebecca performs stand up all over Los Angeles and can often be seen at the Hollywood Improv and the Comedy Store, sometimes in the guise of her character Audrey Mouse who also appears regularly on social media.
A fashion model since her teens, she has appeared in the pages of Italian Vogue, Harper's Bazaar, Elle, I-D magazines, and worked with photographers such as Phil Poyter and Terry Richardson.
Hollywood has become your adopted home. Can you describe a little how you got here and what is it that you love about life in the city of Angels?
I was originally based in New York and then LA started calling...
If you truly want to be isolated then LA is the place to be, it's generally the consensus about the city, but I think I have found the alternative. I live on a beautiful street with friends living in houses opposite and I CAN walk to the grocery store...if I want to. I'm a part of the Franklin Village community and I just think it's the best place. You wouldn't catch me being a Beverly Hills resident, not for all the tea in China! And I love that I can go for hikes in Griffith Park right next to where I live with the knowledge that there are mountain lions somewhere up in those hills. That I can drive to stunning places like the Grand Canyon, or Big Sur without having to get on planes, which are full of germs. I'm a big fan of road trips!
In addition to your recurring role as Nadia in New Girl you are also a successful model and stand up comedienne. What, would you say, exemplifies your very special brand of humour and how does it reflect the way you look at the world around you?
I don't think of myself as a stand up. Rather as a performer. There's sometimes things I want to do, rather than say, I get a feeling of what I want to do and follow that. Sometimes I just want to be in the audience doing aura readings, or singing whilst someone plays the piano, or shredding on my electric ukulele. I don't really want to talk about dating, or sex, or politics… other people can do that and some of them do it really well.
Your stand up routine has a certain existentialist edge to it which I find very appealing. It's as if Jean-Paul Sartre has teamed up with Steve Martin to create something entirely off the wall and unique. Where do you get your ideas for your material from? Did an oligarch ex-boyfriend really buy you a ukulele and have you ever eaten a hundred sandwiches?
When I was a kid I would eat cheese ploughman sandwiches, for those of you who don't know, that's a cheese and pickle sandwich. I'd eat so many of them, maybe that number could have been very close to 100, I just couldn't say for sure. Sometimes the sandwich was toasted cheese. Once my Mom was bringing me this toasted grilled cheese sandwich to my room, it was an open grilled cheese set up. She dropped it on the stairs on the way up, but decided she would give it to me anyway. When she gave it to me I noticed all these little hairs stuck on the grilled cheese. It was undeniably now a hairy carpeted sandwich. I said Mom did you drop this on the carpet?! She hesitated, whether to tell me the truth or not, and then said yes. So I haven't eaten a whole sandwich, since the age of 13. I will bite a tiny corner off. That experience gave me a weird cheese sandwich disorder.
Oh yes, and I was given the uke by an X, maybe he felt guilty because of an infidelity, maybe he really felt the need to give me a uke, either way the experience set me free!
Name one visual artist whose work you love and why?
Wolfe Von Lenkenwicz. My favorite piece is of Snow White sitting on a stool in the kitchen with a cat drinking milk from a saucer, under her suspender clad legs. I own one of his drawings. One day I aspire to have all the walls of my house filled with art!
Name one film which has been an inspiration to you and why?
The film by Martin Scorsese called After Hours with Griffin Dunne and Rosanna Arquette. The story telling really appeals to me, the sound track, the script and the acting. There's a real spaciousness to the film. It's like a real time fairy tale in which the central character Paul gets is trapped in, and you just don't know what will happen to him next. I never tire of watching it!
Actor // Rebecca Reid
Photographer // Marc & Paula Kayne photography
Fashion Editor // Jules Wood
Make-up/Hair // Homa Safar
image 1 & 2: Vintage dress // stylist's own
image 3: One Love Fringe Moto Jacket in Mocha by designer AS by DF
Prudence Maxi Dress w/Cactus Print in Black/Gold by St. Roche
image 4: Ann Dress in black by St. Roche
image 5: Nico tank dress in Black/White by NOM*d
Dita Buckle Skirt in White by Manokhi