Interview: Rarely Asked Questions – Larry Dean: Page 2 of 2

6. What do your family think of your job?

I think most of my family don't understand why it’s me doing it and not them. They all think they are VERY funny, which itself is quite funny. I remember being in the living room with my brother, just putting my feet up, when he asked "Are you a cup?” and then, when I said that I wasn’t a cup, “so why are your feet on the coffee table?". As far as he's concerned comedians across the country have been copying him ever since.

 

7. What’s the worst thing about being a comedian?

The loneliness, the constant travelling, the constant feeling of not being good enough, the inability to really communicate with non-comedians after so long working in the industry, the fear that all your hard work and effort is for nothing, the lack of a clear path to success and the knowledge that even when you do achieve anything it rarely satisfies you for long. The criticism from people who can't understand that humour is subjective. Having to listen to audience members and other non-comedians moan and bitch about your colleagues and friends just because they don't find them funny and have, for some reason, decided to take it personally. But as soon as you get a good laugh you forget all that in a second.

 

8. I think you are very good at what you do (that’s why I’m asking these questions). What do you think of you? 

Thanks very much! I think I'm funny and I have my moments of showing it. But I'm definitely not confident. Not often anyway. I look it on stage but a lot of the time I'm obsessing. Which is stupid because my best material has come when I've been completely confident onstage and not overthinking things... this happens about 3 or 4 gigs a year (out of about 400).

 

9. How much do you earn and how much would you like to earn?

Both enough and not enough for this to be a pretty awkward question. I'd like to earn enough for my brother to finally accept that bum jokes are both hilarious and profitable. He's all about the bottom line.

 

10. How important is luck in terms of career success – have you had lucky breaks?

I think luck can have an effect on your career, particularly the speed at which you progress in the industry, but it’s useless without the hard work to back it up. Everyone gets their luck but what really matters is what you have to offer in those moments of fortune. I don't think I’ve had many lucky breaks to be honest. Or if I have they've always come off the back of hard work. I gig all the time, hardly ever take a day off and constantly try to get better, so I'd hate to think that any 'success' I've had is simply due to luck. Though someone will probably read this and think I've had a lot of luck just to get this ‘far’. Although saying that, when I started out I would have to work for free and would regularly lose real jobs (because gigging came first) and so my dad would cover a lot of my financial losses. To prevent me from feeling quite so guilty and spoilt, I worked even harder to make sure it wasn't a waste. So I suppose I was very lucky back then, in terms of both support and incentive.

 

11. Alan Davies has said that comedians fall into two categories - golfers and self-harmers. The former just get on with life, the latter are tortured artists. Which are you – or do you think you fit into a third category?

I guess the fact that I felt I had to put 'success' and 'far' in quotation marks for question 10 shows I'm definitely in a self-loathing category. That was a category right?

 

12. Who is your favourite person ever and why – not including family or friends or other comedians? 

Elvis. He was talented, cool, generous and his brother died before he was born :-) 

 

13. Do you keep your drawers tidy and if not why not? (please think long and hard about this question, it's to settle an argument with my girlfriend. The future of our relationship could depend on your response).

Do you mean underwear or drawer drawers? I keep my panties very clean, and i usually scrunch most of my clothes into my drawers cos it makes my penis look big big.

 

Larry Dean is at Soho Theatre from March 2 - 4. For those and all of Dean's UK dates click here.

 

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