Rarely Asked Questions

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.

Rarely Asked Questions – Doug Segal

Doug Segal is a comedy mind reader and his latest show is designed to make you feel good with a mix of tricks that will make your brain boggle and jokes that will tickle your funny bone. Apparently the Evening Standard said of him: "Imagine if Derren Brown was funny’". I don't think it was me that said it, but maybe Segal got me to say it after casting a spell on me. 

Interview: Rarely Asked Questions – Tommy Tiernan

Tommy Tiernan really does need no introduction. He is a Perrier Award winner, he appeared in one of the greatest-ever episodes of Father Ted and, well, you should just go and see him, simple as that. He is bringing his powerhouse show Out of The Whirlwind to the Fringe this year. When I saw a version at the Soho Theatre it had everything – stories, gags, loud bits, quiet bits, angry bits, insightful bits, controversial bits, twinkly bits.

Interview: Rarely Asked Questions – Grainne Maguire

Grainne Maguire has had a good year. She made headlines tweeting about her menstrual cycle to the Irish Taoiseach and was invited to appear on Question Time. She has also appeared on The Daily Politics, Stewart Lee's Alternative Comedy Experience and Radio 4's Now Show and has made a name for herself penning gags for Dead Ringers, News Quiz and Newsjack. She returns to the Fringe this year with a new show, Great People Making Great Choices, and is at the Pleasance Courtyard from August 3 - 29.

Rarely Asked Questions – Juliette Burton

You may know the name of Juliette Burton from her outspoken comments about Protein World’s Beach Body Ready adverts last year. Burton tweeted an angry response to the London Underground ads and went viral.

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