Interview: Rarely Asked Questions – Abigoliah Schamaun

Abigoliah Schamaun's latest show, Namaste, Bitches, straddles stand-up and storytelling. There are jokes there but there are also thoughts and ideas. A bit of philosophy if you like. As Schamaun asks, "What's the point in pursuing enlightenment when you could just put your feet up and knock back a bourbon? And what passes for happiness these days?" Schamaun is a certified Bikram Yoga instructor; she has run marathons and Tough Mudders and participated in Crossfit competitions. But why does she bother when you're just as likely to find endorphins at the bottom of a pint glass? In her show she sets out to dissect mankind's relationship with wellness and happiness. It's a show for anyone who's paused on a treadmill or over a shot glass and wondered "wait... what am I doing?"

Abigoliah Schamaun: Namaste, Bitches is at the Underbelly, Cowgate from August 3 - 27. Tickets here. 

1. What is the last thing you do before you go onstage (apart from check your flies and/or check your knickers aren't sticking out of your skirt and check for spinach between your teeth)?

Scream. Well, I actually do that as I'm walking on stage. As everyone is clapping, I'm screaming "Yaaaaay!" It's a habit I got into when I was starting out and it's stuck. Helps relieve nerves. 

2. What irritates you?

People who are chronically late to things. Also when I want to watch a good procedural crime show and my boyfriend insists we watch a nature documentary insisting that "There's murder in nature too!" It's not the same!!! And he knows it.

3. What is the most dangerous thing you have ever done?

On purpose? In 2013 I did a Fringe show where I set my hand on fire every night. By accident? During a show in Australia I electrocuted myself and shut down all the power in the venue because of it. 

4. What is the most stupid thing you have ever done?

Gave up a life in New York and moved to London. It's also the best thing I've ever done but it was a huuuuge leap of faith. 

5. What has surprised you the most during your career in comedy?

For a long time I was obsessed with finishing things. Finishing a joke, or writing a show, or performing a run thinking it'd be satisfying. But there's no finish. It's all just a work in progress. 

Interview continues here.

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