Josie Long’s rescheduled show from February entitled Something Better will be performed at Cardiff’s Clwb Ifor Bach on May 24-25. Following the sell-out success of her previous show Cara Josephine, Josie’s eighth solo stand-up show focuses on optimism and hopefulness. Andy Howells recently put questions to the comedian.
What lead you into comedy?
I am a natural born show off, and I was obsessed with TV comedy as a child. When I started performing comedy onstage I fell in love with it straight away and I’ve felt addicted to it ever since.
Who are your comedy heroes?
I grew up loving Vic (Reeves) and Bob (Mortimer)and Monty Python but now my comedy heroes are all female comedians. They have to be twice as good to get anywhere near as far as their male counterparts and on top of that they are delights to hang out with. Bridget Christie, Isy Suttie, Maria Bamford, Sara Pascoe- champions and wonders, all of them!
What’s your current show about and what inspired it?
It’s called Something Better. It’s about trying to get back to feeling hopeful about the world and about politics despite, well, 2016 happening.
This will be your eighth time out on tour, what are the differences you notice now from when you first started out on the comedy circuit?
I feel so bloody lucky because after having done a few tours, I have a crowd who actually know what to expect from my shows and want to see my silly stuff. On my first tour I had a lot of crowds who were simply taking a punt on some comedy and a lot of times when that punt would not work out well for them and I can but apologise.
What can people expect from the new show?
It’s silly and friendly and it’s trying to be a show about reconciliation after the horrible divisiveness of Brexit. There’s also a good bit about necklaces, a bit where I pretend to be a witch from the 17th century and a bit about a bird, so I feel like there’s something for everyone except Nigel Farage.
The show is about optimism and hopefulness as we enter into 2017 does that reflect where you’re at personally?
Yes, I think it really does. I feel like writing the show was part of the process of getting here too, and I really hope that audiences will have gone through similar stages in the past few months and will identify with it. But yeah, I am hopeful- I feel like it’s the only way to be, no matter what happens.
Are you looking forward to appearing in Wales?
Yes, very much. It’s like England but better looking and with Nye Bevan.
What’s the funniest or strangest thing that’s ever happened to you at a gig?
Ha that’s such a broad question! I’ve done so many gigs now and you name it, I’ve had it: people passing out, all of us getting thrown out of the venue and having to finish the show in the pub garden next door, being heckled by my mum, being heckled by a member of the House of Lords, being attacked by a bat (the flying creature not the sports implement)!
Who makes you laugh out loud?
James Acaster is so brilliant, he is really taking stand up to new and exciting places at the moment.
Comedy Heaven: If you could spend the evening with any comedy performer living or dead who would it be and why?
Oh my word, that’s a hard question. It would be Victoria Wood. I love her so much and I was devastated that she passed away last year, it was tragically too young and she was such a mighty creative talent.
- Visit clwb.net/events/event/josie-long for ticketdetails.
- Pictures of Josie Long by Phil Chambers and Idil Sukan. Read more about Josie at josielong.com