If you aren’t familiar with the reigning NXT Women’s Tag Team Champions, take the time to get to know Alba Fyre and Isla Dawn. These are two immensely talented performers who should be earmarked for a main roster debut, in due time. Before WrestleMania 40 in Philadelphia next year if they have anything to say about it.
The pair last competed at NXT Stand & Deliver where they defeated Fallon Henley and Kiana James to win their tag team titles. In the days leading up to that match, Cageside Seats had the pleasure of chatting with both Fyre and Dawn at the WrestleMania Press Junket.
Don’t let their on-screen personas fool you, these Scotland natives are absolutely lovely people. Find out for yourselves in the first part of our series on getting to know your NXT Superstars.
You can read our Q&A with Alba Fyre and Isla Dawn below or you can watch the video above and let their fun personalities really shine.
Disclaimer: The questions themselves have been edited to provide additional information and better fit the written format.
Cageside Seats: Alba, since you started in wrestling back in 2009, fans only ever knew you as Kay Lee Ray. You get to WWE and you get to keep your name. You go on this great run as NXT UK Women’s Champion. Then you come over to NXT and they have you re-debut as Alba Fyre. That had to be a difficult transition.
Alba Fyre: “It’s my name as well. Like my shoot name is Kayleigh Rae. So, it was really hard. Like for weeks people were calling me Alba and apparently I was just ignoring them (laughs). But it’s hard to get an ear, like that is what I respond to when someone shouts now.”
“It has been a good little, like, I don’t wanna say refresh but it’s been like, okay, we can try something different from here. This isn’t Kay Lee Ray anymore. It’s Alba Fyre and I can go in different directions with that and not be so finite... No, no, it has to be Kay Lee Ray.”
CSS: You guys have been killing it in NXT as a tag team and you really seem like you have a lot of fun working with one another, whether it’s against one another or teaming with one another. Take me through the process though, of putting together those ritual videos that you guys have been doing on Tuesday nights.
Alba Fyre: “We’re just having fun with it. We’re seeing different things from, not just like one movie or anything, but different aspects of mythology and sometimes religion as well. And it’s just throwing it at the wall and seeing what sticks and, as you said, we are having fun. So, I really do think that’s translating.”
Isla Dawn: “We’re trying to see what entertains us and what we’ll enjoy and if that’s translating then that’s perfect because we’re just having fun doing what we’re doing.”
CSS: How long does it typically take you to get through a promo shoot?
Alba Fyre: “It depends. It depends what [expletive deleted] we’re on that day (Isla laughs while Alba covers her mouth to retroactively censor herself).”
Isla Dawn: “That is an issue though, because we do have a lot of fun together. So we’ll like bounce off each other and you can see the camera person be like, okay...”
Alba Fyre: “They’re like Alba Fyre! And you’re like, sorry. We’re ready to go. We’re professionals. We got this!”
CSS: Do you guys ad-lib a lot? Do you use bullet points or a full script?
Alba Fyre: “It just depends. Sometimes we have a wee bit more of a think about it and get more on paper. Sometimes it’s just like bullet points and we’re like, right, this is what we want to hit. But it really just, again, depends on the situation. If I’m gonna do a live promo on NXT, I prefer to have a wee bit more of an idea of what we’re saying rather than just bullet points. Some people are the opposite, some people just like their bullet points and like to ramble.”
Isla Dawn: “I feel like as well, everything we’re doing because we’ve got so much of a hand in it and it’s so much of our baby and our stuff, like we’re trusted by everybody above and there’s like a good level of communication with everything. Like it’s all really natural. So, it just happens and it works.”
After becoming tag team champions at #StandAndDeliver, @wwe_alba and @IslaDawn are ready to take over NXT. #WWENXT pic.twitter.com/VCQ4BEXYth— WWE NXT (@WWENXT) April 6, 2023
CSS: Isla, you spent the first four years of your WWE career in NXT UK. Now you’ve come over here to the United States. What’s the transition been like for you?
Isla Dawn: I have loved every minute of it. For so long, I was in NXT UK and we were kind of like the underground. Not as many people watched us. Not as many people had heard of us. And especially for me, I wasn’t one of the people that was coming out a lot to do stuff. I didn’t have the character to do that.”
“But I managed to find myself there and now I feel like I’ve transitioned and I feel a bit more confident and a bit more whole and a bit more settled in myself.”
Alba Fyre: “Her confidence in the past few months. Like, I remember standing around ringside to watch her match with Tatum [Paxley], and she’s always had the skill, but I feel like the confidence is there now for sure.”
“Like Shawn [Michaels] is saying, we brought you here to be you. Now go and be you. And you’re being you. And that’s really great to see.”
Isla Dawn: “It’s also coming here and having people like Alba and the other UK people that have kind of paved away for us. It’s having her there as a support and then getting to work with her so much and getting to team with her. That’s eased the transition so much.”
CSS: Now you guys were both products of NXT UK, which unfortunately isn’t really there anymore. How’d you guys feel when, for lack of a better term, it was shuttered? But it’s gonna come back as something different.
Alba Fyre: “It’s gonna come back as NXT Europe. Obviously gutted with some friends that aren’t with us anymore and stuff like that. For ourselves and the career we had there, we try to make it the best possible. And I feel like that’s all we can do is try and make everything that we touch the best thing that we can. Hopefully Europe is the same experience for the people that will be doing that, because that for us, that helped us just get to here and where we need to be.”
Isla Dawn: “I know for a fact that everything, like in wrestling and as a person now, was all formed in NXT UK. The people I worked with and the people that I’d socialize with and that made me, me. It was the perfect kind of breeding ground for all of us. So I think Europe, if it’s got even like half of the heart, it’s gonna be (pauses)... I was gonna swear there (laughs).”
“I think it’ll come back bigger and better and there’s so much push behind it and the stuff that they’re working on for it already seems like it’s gonna be mental. And hopefully we’ll get some faces returning for it.”
CSS: Now there was quite an infusion of NXT UK talent that came over to NXT and joined you guys already.
Alba Fyre: “The amount out NXT UK talent, that are here right now or on the main roster. Like, Piper Niven being able to come straight here and go straight to Raw.”
CSS: She was the first one I believe.
Alba Fyre: “Yeah she was! Proud of you. Proud of you. But there’s so many of us here... that there’s definitely something in the water over in the UK.”
Isla Dawn: “Look at Butch. Rhea was part of NXT UK, first Women’s Champion. On Stand & Deliver, I think bar like two matches, every match [had] an NXT UK person in it. I think only Gargano/Grayson and the main event [didn’t]. The UK has literally taken over.”
CSS: You go back and you look at Stand & Deliver last year. There are so many people who were on that card, that are on the main roster now. You look at Gunther and L.A. Knight for example. Gunther [had] a big match at WrestleMania. So is it kind of in your head what a big performance at Stand & Deliver might be able to lead to. Who knows what happens a year from now?
Alba Fyre: Next year we will be standing here doing these interviews, actually on WrestleMania. It’s amazing to be here and be part of the WrestleMania weekend and be on Stand & Deliver, but the goal is ‘Mania, and I hope next year we’re, ‘we did it!’”
Isla Dawn: “It feels like the first step because we’ve not been a tag team for long.”
Alba Fyre: “I keep saying that. Like we’re manifesting it, but no, we’re gonna make it happen, right? I’m saying it now. We’re not gonna manifest anything. We’re gonna go and we’re gonna work for it and we’re gonna be here next year for WrestleMania.”
Isla Dawn: “It needs to happen, genuinely. It just feels like the natural progression of things is we just need to keep... going up and up and up and up and that’s what we want.”
CSS: Back in 2020, it was announced that an NXT UK TakeOver show would be held in Dublin, Ireland. At the time, you were NXT UK Women’s Champion and you challenged the reigning Raw Women’s Champion to a match, and then the world came to a screeching halt. You want to talk manifestation, allow me. Let’s get that Alba Fyre vs. Becky Lynch match going here in the United States.
Alba Fyre: “I’d love to work her one day, I mean, I feel like anybody does because she’s at the top of her game. There’s a few of them just now that are at the top that I’ve never got to work and I would just love to go on and work.”
Isla Dawn: “I’ve said it a few times, like she’s one of the people that’s done independents, came through NXT and worked her way to where she is and she’s one of the paths to follow.”
“She’s come into the Performance Center a couple of times and she’ll just like sit and chat and she’s just lovely. She’s just a genuinely nice person.”
Blessed to get a second chance.— Isla Dawn (@IslaDawn) April 11, 2023
Cursed that it’s against us.
Alba Fyre & Isla Dawn will defend their NXT Women’s Tag Team Championships for the first time tonight in a rematch with Fallon Henley & Kiana James. NXT kicks-off live at 8pm ET on the USA Network.
Make sure to check our full interview with Alba Fyre and Isla Dawn in the video at the top of this article. You can follow Rick Ucchino on Twitter and subscribe to the Bleav in Pro Wrestling Podcast Channel for more of his work.