Rosie Wilby has been a favourite of mine since seeing her live talking about how couples who have a height difference’s eyes must have met across a seesaw and how people should have depression stickers on their car. If you can listen to her radio show, download her podcast or catch one of her shows then I would thoroughly recommend it. I talked to her about her new Edinburgh show, her love of swingball and the madness of coming out to her parents.
So tell us about your new Edinburgh Show, How Not to Make It In Britpop?
I used to do music, and it’s about some of the characters I’ve met along the way – the ones who auditioned for the band and promoted the gigs we played at, ran the rehearsal rooms we hung out at and so on. Times have changed so much – the popular culture… and the technology! I remember my girlfriend giving me a mobile phone and it was huge. The politics in the country were changing too. We were feeling an optimism of change after ‘New Labour’ got in. At the time I was writing a diary as a magazine column in Making Music. It’s made me laugh reading bits of it again. I wanted to do a show on how I’ve changed, and how memories don’t stay fixed – like when you tell a story it changes every time you tell it.
Do you find it difficult travelling?
No I enjoy travelling. On the train you get headspace, I can do some writing, daydream or read a book.
Do you have a favourite place to perform?
The RVT in South London is quite a regular haunt as its where I stage my regular cabaret night Femmes by the Thames. I’m trialling a new stand up hour there in August reclaiming the title of my debut show from 2006…. Olympic Swingball Champion 2012.
I used to love swing ball. I’d play with my brothers for hours.
I think my parents got me it because I’m an only child and I could play it on my own!
Where do you get most of your comedy material from?
I’m forever scribbling little notes on the bus or if I overhear funny things. My girlfriend says some really funny things too.
Your girlfriend doesn’t mind?
No she likes it! I include everyone in an affectionate way. And I don’t use their names. My ex didn’t like it. But then when I talk of my exes now in my own mind they’ve all morphed into a blob of comedic, neurotic exes.
My girlfriend showed me the bunny Olympics on the internet – rabbits doing show jumping. Brilliant!
Rachel Holmes, my best pal, is hilarious. We do a podcast together called Odd Ones Out on iTunes – it’s a bit bonkers.
Who are your favourite comedians?
Eddie Izzard is the main one I’ve grown up loving. Diva editor Jane Czyzselska actually said I was a lesbian version of him which was very flattering.
The bit in your stand-up when you talk about coming out and how your parents reacted is so funny, is that how it actually happened?
Yeah, I mean my dad didn’t have much to say but my mum was just too cool about it. At the time I was finding it difficult and needed time to sort out my identity and my mum was telling me ‘I could’ve been a lesbian you know.’ Embarrassing!
When I first brought my girlfriend round, she got out a lesbian poem and read it out loud at the tea table.
Do you have any pet peeves?
Oh well this morning. I was doing some phone banking and they asked would I do a short survey and then it said press one for yes. And then there was no other option! People taking away options from you. They don’t want to give you any.
What’s next for 2012/2013?
The new show! Hopefully touring. At the moment I’m writing a book based on the Britpop show so I’m hoping to get that out next year and do more writing in future too