Rarely Asked Questions

Interview: Rarely Asked Questions: Hans Teeuwen

Bridget Christie, no less, has called Dutch absurdist Hans Teeuwen “the gold standard of comedy” and says that the first time she saw him, in 2008, it was like “watching a hilarious snake slowly digest a rat, while pulling funny faces and playing The Horst Wessel Lied on a tin whistle.” I’m not sure I can improve on that description. To put it bluntly Teeuwen is a unique talent in a class of his own, extremely versatile, extremely unpredictable and extremely exciting.

Rarely Asked Questions – Rob Rouse

I’ve been tipping Rob Rouse for stardom for so long it has started to become embarrassing. But he is finally making up for lost time. This year he played Bottom in Ben Elton’s return-to-form Shakespearean sitcom Upstart Crow and cornered the contemporary market for idiot sidekicks. A Christmas special and a second series should cement his reputation as a comic actor.

Interview: Rarely Asked Questions – Aditi Mittal

Aditi Mittal is a helpless Indian woman who is fed up of being a helpless Indian woman. After years of being told to ‘‘be quiet, sit down, be seen not heard,’‘ Mittal would like to say a few things. In her show Things They Wouldn't Let Me Say Mittal explores everything that plagues the modern Indian woman from eve teasing to sanitary napkins, from bringing up good Indian parents to being raised correctly by your children.

Interview: Rarely Asked Questions – Sam Fletcher

If you like your comedy quirky and lo-fi Sam Fletcher is your man. In the past the Edinburgh Comedy Awards Best Newcomer nominee and CBBC star has mixed (sort of) magic tricks with David Shrigleyish illustrations and crackpot inventions that would quickly get him thrown off of Dragon's Den. Which would be human giant Peter Jones and that lemon-faced woman's loss. Fletcher is back in Edinburgh with a new show to amuse and amaze his fans. Read his jolly answers and go and see his jolly funny show.

Interview: Rarely Asked Questions – Scott Agnew

I've Snapped My Banjo String, Let's Just Talk is a snapshot of hardcore, working-class gay life, touching on mental health, sexual health, and general misadventure. Former Scottish Comedian of the Year Agnew elaborates: "My 2012 show – Tales of the Sauna – was really well-received, it transferred to the Soho Theatre and took me around Europe and it really looked like things were happening. And then it just kinda stopped.

Interview: Rarely Asked Questions – Ayesha Hazarika

Ayesha Hazarika spent eight years as political adviser to Harriet Harman and Ed Miliband, but before that she had been a stand-up comedian. For reasons which or may not be obvious she is now doing stand-up again more regularly.

Interview: Rarely Asked Questions – Steve Bugeja

Steve Bugeja won the BBC New Comedy Award in  2013 with a strikingly nerdy high energy set. Despite his ongoing success he is as neurotic as ever, which is handy as it is one of the many things that makes him so funny. In his new show Unpronounceable Bugeja airs his various angsty concerns and in particlar his frustration that people tend to pronounce his surname wrong. Steve, I feel your pain.

Interview: Rarely Asked Questions – Elliot Steel

  • Am I getting older or are the comedians getting younger? Probably both I guess. When I was first impressed by Elliot Steel a couple of years ago he was doing autobiographical gags about underage drinking. That’s how young he is. Since then he has become old enough to drink legally and has become a sharper, more mature comedian while still retaining that mischievous scalliwag streak. It’s probably no surprise he is so skilful, his father is seasoned stand-up Mark Steel, so in a way he is going into the family business.

Interview: Rarely Asked Questions – Brennan Reece

Brennan Reece is definitely going places. He won the English Comedian of the Year award in 2015 beating stand-ups old enough to be his parents and since then has performed in Australia and supported Joe Lycett on tour. He is a veritable livewire onstage, chatting about his family, his life, football and finding the funny side everywhere. Everglow is his debut hour at the Edinburgh Fringe and you will be hearing more from him.

Interview: Rarely Asked Questions – Adam Hess

I laughed like a loon at Adam Hess' Fringe show last summer. The gags flew around the room at such a fast and furious pace that I was still chuckling at one punchline when the next one hit me. He more than deserved his Edinburgh Comedy Award Best Newcomer nomination. As well as the wordplay and one-liners there is a playful, childlike streak to Hess. He felt a bit like a boy trapped in a man’s body. His new show is called Feathers.

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