Interview: Rarely Asked Questions – Tom Ward

Tom Ward has been on my radar for a few years now. First because he was bloody weird, and more recently because he is bloody funny. Ward has harnessed his oddball side and made it much more relatable lately, while still retaining that special, indefinable Tom Ward Something. His latest show, Love Machine, touches on issues that everyone with a pulse will recognise. Well, almost everyone. As he puts it, "heartbreak, living (and dancing) alone in a house with no heating or hot water, mother problems, being 91% straight (prev. 77%). A show that explores a man's fears, joys, loves and losses; veering between lanes like a Megabus driver with nothing left to lose." Vehemently recommended.

Tom Ward: Love Machine is at Just The Tonic at The Tron from Aug 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)?

I stand alone facing the direction of the room from wherever I am, arms out as if to say ‘we are all brothers and sisters in this shit heap’, breath and direct as much love as I can muster towards the crowd.

 

2. What irritates you?

Being misquoted, being misrepresented, not being praised when I deserve it, being fancied by people I don’t fancy, my neighbourhood turning into a farmers market hell hole of chino wearing cunts, Guildford audiences, poor performance in the bedroom on my side, The Kooks, middle aged men joining in cos they never quite had it in them to try stand up, people who talk a lot. People who don’t listen, people who don’t get the fucking hint, passive aggression, competitive male banter, panel shows.

 

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

I’m not a dangerous person. Probably something wimpy like improvising on live radio. Or accidental things. 2015 felt pretty dangerous. I was in Paris the night of the attack on Bataclan at a venue the same size 2 miles away called La Cigale. That was spooky. Walking home from a gig a month later (didn’t realise) there was a man with machete waiting for me. He asked me if I had an iPhone. I said no. He re-sheathed. Being wrongly identified as a violent criminal in Edinburgh 2015, having my house raided by 8 cops while I was out and questioned for 4 hours at the station. They had my comedy notes in an evidence bag and called me by my birth name 'Christopher' which has never been used by anyone. That was creepy. I use my middle name detective. And am not violent. Thank god for DNA. 

 

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

Sleep with my friend’s girlfriend when I was 25. I don’t think I understood that just cos they were casual meant that it was a free for all. I never forgave myself. You don’t go near a friend’s woman or man. Even if they invite you to join them it’s probably not advisable.

 

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

How my love for it could waver so badly in year 6, after such highs early on.

 

Interview continues here.

 

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