Jacob Edwards: Live and Laughing

AS_A1038-4I had the unbelievable good fortune to meet and promote Jacob Edwards, hilarious London comedian,  during last year’s Fringe Festival, so thought I would catch up with him and his happenings for a wee comedic interview.

1.So, what’s the average day in the life of a comedian like?

Its pretty much pure glamour. Eating cereal wearing only my underpants. Watching This Morning on ITV, then watching it again on ITV + 1. More cereals. Then spending far too long reading vile articles on Daily Mail Online. Actually, I’ve been nice and busy recently. I’ve been hosting a prank show called CTRL Freaks for a new channel called London Live, where we take control of contestants social media and get them to do stupid stunts. Totally silly, but fun!

2.Do you prefer big projects or more intimate gigs?

Obviously, the buzz from doing a big gig that goes well is amazing, I can see why a lot of performers become totally addicted to it. But a lot of comics, myself included, enjoy intimate gigs as you usually have a much closer connection with the audience, and the response is often better because they feel more involved. But if the crowd gets too small, the audience can feel a bit exposed, so sure there’s a balance somewhere. The search continues…

3.Who are the funniest people you’ve ever met?

It sounds obvious to say other comedians, but that’s who I’m going for. But not when they’re doing they’re material on stage, I usually find comedians most amusing off-stage, backstage at gigs. The chat in the dressing room usually goes along the lines of ‘Why do we do this to ourselves?’ I just find it funny that a group of people are all sat there, dreading having to do a job that they have chosen to do and work hard at. Of course, its even funnier when gig goes badly…

4. Tell me a bit about Live at The Electric!

It was pretty terrifying, but lots of fun. I’ve done big studio records before, but never as one of my characters doing material written for TV. So plenty of nerves beforehand, but it went great on the night and got a really good response when it went out – so all good! There aren’t that many places where you can do live character comedy on TV, so it was great to be a regular in the show.

5.What would you say is your comedic ‘style’?

In a word, I’d say ‘alternative’. At the moment, my live material is character-based and is pretty clown-like. Its not what you’d call mainstream stand-up and demands quite a lot from the audience. Its been described as ‘anti-comedy’, in that the audience aren’t always supposed to know what to laugh at or when, people tend to love it or not get what all the fuss is about. Does that make it any clearer? Not sure.

6. Any exciting new stints coming up?

I’m hosting a new regular live night called ‘The Remée Martin Show’ in London, which I’m working on with a TV production company. Its essentially a chatshow with me hosting in character, a bit like Mrs Merton, which we’re looking to work up into a TV pilot. Its a bit mental, but should be fun.

7. Do you enjoy working at the festival?

Ha! That’s the unanswerable question when it comes to Edinburgh. Afterwards, you always look at the Festival through rose-tinted glasses, you remember all the fun stuff. During the month though, its pretty hardcore. Its pretty much a relentless rollercoaster of nerves and angst, worries about the show, but also all the stuff that goes on around it – promotion, audience, reviews etc. But the good gigs make it all worth it.

8. How can an aspiring comedian get into the industry?

Do what you think is funny, not what you think other people will find funny. You see a lot of newer acts trying to copy a more established act, rather than developing their own style. Obviously, everyone has their influences, but its best to work on yourself from the start. Also, I wouldn’t worry to much about getting on in the industry, I think new acts should just do what they enjoy and work hard, and the industry will find them.

9. Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

At the moment, I’m writing this sat in Starbucks surrounded by other peoples’ screaming children, so hopefully not here. I’m writing a sitcom at the moment, so I’d love to get a project like that away. Would be great to develop a project like that and have time to improve and build it over time. other peoples’ kids are really annoying, by the way.

10. And finally, are there any acts you’d recommend at this year’s Fringe?

I performed alongside the rather wonderful Marcel Lucont on Live at the Electric, a close personal showbusiness pal. He’s fantastic live, well worth going to see. So I’d recommend you staring at his big French face for an hour this festival, you can get the details here: http://www.marcellucont.comth (2)

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