Interview: Rarely Asked Questions – Tim Key

You really should know Tim Key by now. He was in the very first, very excellent episode of Inside No 9, he plays Sidekick Simon in various Alan Partridge projects and has been known to appear onstage with Daniel Kitson. And that's just for starters. He was also in Art at the Old Vic and Taskmaster on Dave to name two more of his various projects. His live shows are always special events. One involved a bath onstage. One involved a bed onstage. We don't know much about about his latest show, Megadate, but we can't wait to see it. It is at Soho Theatre from October 11 - 28, tickets here. Further dates at the Arts Theatre in December will go on sale soon.


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)?


Final checks. Make sure I have what I need. 1. My poems, one in top blouse pocket, the rest in right trouser pocket. 2. Two cans of Kronenburg in tatty black carrier bag. 3. My tie, pink, stiff from beer; in with the Kroneys. All of these things are vital. They are my spear, my shield, my helmet.


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


I did the play Art this year and that felt a bit spicy. I had to do a speech that was about twenty-five minutes long and that killed me. You don't want to look like a plum and there were moments when I felt like I was running the risk. Other than that I climbed Snowdon a few years ago and accidentally chose the route where people sometimes have problems. I had some problems and didn't like it.


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


Got off a train to make a phone call, train pulled away. That sort of thing? Everything was on that train, wallet, tickets, laptop, huge case of clothes, costume, headband, the lot. Slowly chugging out of Edinburgh Waverly. Fortunately your friend and mine Nishant Kumar was on the train and took custody of my shit. He waited at Kings Cross patiently until I had put my life back together and ushered myself onto the next train (thanks to a stern but ultimately kind Scottish guard). I owe Nishant for the 45 minutes he spent with two comedians’ luggage.


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


How durable comedians are. It is tricky (I think) and yet we all keep plugging away.


5. What do your parents/children (delete as applicable) think of your job?


My parents find it absolutely fine these days. My twenties were the tricky part for them, watching me sailing rudderlessly into oblivion. These days they can bring Bridget and Alan down to London and try and meet Rufus Sewell. I think my mum sometimes worries when I'm "writing" or not doing as well as "Mark Watson". They have mixed feelings when I talk about them on stage I imagine. But mainly they get on with it. It must be weird.

Interview continues here.

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