Savannah Stacey Keenan Up interview

03.02.2021 Exclusive, Interviews

Interview & photography: Kingsford

You’ve been busy filming with Rich (Smith) recently. What are you working on?
In the past I’ve had a couple of clips here and there but this time around it’s going to be a whole part for the new (Skateboard Cafe) edit.

When is that due?
Ideally before Christmas. Rich wants to release it around the same time as the new Cafe collection.

After our trip to Paris with Skateboard Cafe back in 2017 you told me you found filming difficult and worried that you were taking up too much time when others could be filming. How do you feel about it these days?
That was quite weird because that was my first time really skating street. I definitely don’t find it as difficult as I did then. I find it a lot more manageable but I guess also then I didn’t really know what to skate or what could work or whatever. A lot of it was realising that stuff.

You and Rich seem to have a good working relationship.
Definitely. Most of the time I have ideas of where I want to go, but as the day progresses he might see something and say: “That would work,” and I’ll give it a go.

Varial heelflip, City of London

Do you prefer going out just with him or being in a bigger group?
When it comes to filming I definitely prefer just going out with Rich and a few other people. It’s more focused.

You recently lost your job due to the pandemic. Tell us about that.
I lost that job as a result of the pandemic but I was also doing that job also as a result of the pandemic because the kind of work I was doing before is not really available any more. So I ended up going for another job and I guess with the pandemic and everything they weren’t getting enough customers through the door and they couldn’t afford to keep me on.

It was a new restaurant wasn’t it?
Yes. I started working there in September.It was really busy and then suddenly no one was walking through the door.

What type of work were you doing before?
A mixture of things. This time last year I was doing a lot of internships. I was doing one in consumer research in fashion and PR, that kind of stuff.

It felt like you pulled away from being a sponsored skater a couple of years ago.  You spent some time travelling and went off radar for a while. Do you want to talk about this?
Yes, it was a few things. To be fair I was largely still working out what I wanted to do.

Frontside heelflip, Stratford

Did you feel pressure as a sponsored skater?
It wasn’t that I felt any particular pressure from my sponsors but in my mind I just felt like I should be getting clips every time I went out skating or I would feel too nervous to skate at an event. Now I am a bit older I feel I’ve worked it out a bit more. Also I had a bit of a turning point this time last year when I fell in love with skating more than I have at any point. Then I spent a month in LA with my friend Aimee (Gillingwater) and I’ve just been straight hyped ever since.

Did you feel like your sponsors supported you through that?
Yes, they are great.

Who is your skate crew in London?
BSP. One of the locals Charlie (Robinson) recently picked up a camera and has been filming everyone.

Do you still go back to Bromley to skate your old local park now that you’re living in east London?
Not too often, every week or two. My grandma lives quite close to the park and Sundays are always a good session so I can go skate there then go to hers for Sunday dinner.

Boneless, Kennington

What’s the appeal of that park? People travel a long way to skate there.
It’s a got a very simple layout: bank, driveway, quarterpipe. My favourite feature is the driveway. Most of the time I go back to skate that because a lot of other parks don’t have one.

Who are your favourite skaters to watch?
I really enjoy watching Deedz (Didrik Galasso). He has one of the best styles in skating.

Are there any up-and-coming skaters people should look out for?
Definitely Twigy and also Atlantic (Johnson) – he’s one to watch over the next couple of years.

What are your plans next year (2021)?
I was trying to get work again but now I don’t mind taking a little bit of a back seat for a couple of months and trying to finish getting these clips. I guess next year when I’ve finished filming this (Savannah’s part for the new Skateboard Cafe edit) I do want to get back into working in and around fashion but also keeping the flow going and filming a lot more.