How to Fail as a Popstar
The first play by multi-media artist Vivek Shraya, about fame and personal transformation.
Described as "cultural rocket fuel" by Vanity Fair, Vivek Shraya is a multi-media artist whose art, music, novels, and poetry and children's books explore the beauty and the power of personal and cultural transformation. How to Fail as a Popstar is Vivek's debut theatrical work, a one-person show that chronicles her journey from singing in shopping malls to "not quite" pop music superstardom with beguiling humor and insight. A reflection on the power of pop culture, dreams, disappointments, and self-determination, this astonishing work is a raw, honest, and hopeful depiction of the search to find one's authentic voice.
The book includes colour photographs from the show's 2020 production in Toronto, and a foreword by its director Brendan Healy.
It's a moving tale that any person who's struggled to achieve their dreams can easily relate to, and Shraya has a certain magnetism to her performance that keeps the one-woman show moving fluidly. -Broadway World
Shraya may not have reached the top echelon of pop stardom, but sharing her persistence and self-discovery just might be a bigger gift. After all, these are the stories we rarely hear told. -NOW Magazine
A funny, warm and honest show by a rare, 360-degree talent. -Denise Balkissoon, executive editor of Chatelaine Magazine
An important show from such an important artist. Everyone should see How to Fail as a Popstar! -Bif Naked, recording artist
Vivek Shraya's How to Fail as a Popstar is a maguffin - a demonstration of Shraya's virtuosity as a performer, a songwriter, and writer, and is anything but a failure. It is a cutting and hilarious look at the spark and afterglow of any musician entering the industry - the adolescence, adulthood, and moribundity of this creative life-within-a-life. She claims to not "have the range," but Popstar demonstrates the opposite - a multi-disciplinary artist at the height of her powers. -Owen Pallett, violinist and composer
The work of radical self-acceptance is so challenging I never want to do it. In this piece of art, Vivek's fearless vulnerability, steady gaze and sure hand creates another way in, an opening, and all I have to do is show up. Now it's your turn. Lucky you. -Elvira Kurt, teacup butch, comedy legend and writer for Canada's Drag Race