Interview: Rarely Asked Questions – Joseph Morpurgo

Joseph Morpurgo's solo shows are some of the most innovative, inventive comedy events you will see. His interactive 2015 set picked up an Edinburgh Comedy Award nomination and his latest outing, Hammerhead, breaks down walls again. This time Morpurgo plays a pretentious actor taking part in a post-show Q&A. But the more he takes himself seriously – and we all know actors that do that – the more things start to fall apart. It's an inspired piece, which uses state-of-the-art technology really well, but at its heart there is also an utterly committed, great comic performance. Probably because Morpurgo is a genuinely good actor in real-life - he is also part of the Austentatious ensemble. More about their work here.

Joseph Morpurgo: Hammerhead is at Soho Theatre from October 16 - 28. 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)?

1. Mainline Coca Cola, then water to balance that out, then Coca Cola for compensatory energy, then water to…(repeat until last possible moment) 

 

2. What irritates you?

2. Snark. Meanies. 

 

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

3. I went skiing for the first time this year. I’m quite scared of heights, so was nervous about the ski-lift. As it happened, I had to take my first one on my own, and, as expected, found it completely nerve-wracking - four minutes of vice-like clinging and mindful breathing as I scrolled over chasms and rock clumps. Everyone thought this was amusingly wimpy when I told them at lunch.  

Later that day, reunited with my group, we all took the same lift. When one of our group pulled down the barrier, I said “That’s weird - the one I was on earlier didn’t have a barrier”. I’d not realised you pull the barrier down - I’d been hanging onto it like a monkey bar, without anything to stop me slipping off the seat and falling to certain death. A rogue gust or sudden jolt and I’d have been pulped ice mash. 

 

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

4. Cf (3) 

 

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

5.The myriad ways in which projectors can malfunction. 

Interview continues here.

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