Western Suburbs Weekly - - Weekly Life - Tanya MacNaughton

CO­ME­DIAN Josh Earl’s el­dest son Oliver is a savvy five-yearold.

When his fa­ther asked per­mis­sion to turn the bed­time story he had made up for him into his next chil­dren’s com­edy show, Oliver granted it on the pro­viso the show was named af­ter him.

Oliver Up a Tree is part of this year’s Awe­some In­ter­na­tional Arts Fes­ti­val for Bright Young Things and marks Earl’s re­turn af­ter his de­but in the fes­ti­val’s pro­gram last year with My Fam­ily is Weirder Than Your Fam­ily.

He will also run song writ­ing work­shop La La La to Ha Ha Ha – How to Write Funny Songs on Oc­to­ber 4 and 7, plus free Storytime with Josh Earl at State Li­brary of WA on Wed­nes­day, Oc­to­ber 5, at 10.30am.

Known for his work on the com­edy cir­cuit, and as for­mer host of the re­vived Spicks and Specks, the Mel­bourne-based co­me­dian started per­form­ing for chil­dren in 2007 when Mel­bourne Com­edy Fes­ti­val asked him to do a Kids Com­edy Club spot.

“I just did my act that I was do­ing in the Mel­bourne Com­edy Fes­ti­val that year with­out the swear­ing and it wasn’t very good be­cause the kids weren’t in­ter­ested in what I was say­ing,” Earl said.

“The next year I wrote a proper 10-minute chunk of ma­te­rial for kids and it went re­ally well.

“I’d been do­ing that for awhile and now my el­dest is at an age where he’d like to see what I do, so I de­cided to start writ­ing a whole show for kids.

“I worked for seven years as a school li­brar­ian and read­ing to kids was a good train­ing ground be­cause you could see what they liked, what they found funny and what they found in­ter­est­ing; it was a nice meld­ing of the two pro­fes­sions.”

Oliver Up a Tree is a com­edy show for ages five years and older about a small town where ev­ery­one keeps to them­selves un­til one day young boy Oliver, who wants to learn more about ev­ery­one, de­cides to climb a tree.

“Ev­ery­one in the town comes along to try and get him out of the tree,” Earl said.

“The way they do that is by show­ing off their spe­cial skill or shar­ing some­thing about them­selves with ev­ery­one else in the town.

“It’s a re­ally nice show in terms of com­mu­nity and how ev­ery­one has their own story. I think that’s some­thing re­ally im­por­tant th­ese days when peo­ple can be scared of dif­fer­ence.

“And now my wife (who is from Perth) says Henry, my youngest, needs a show too.”

Co­me­dian Josh Earl is look­ing for­ward to re­turn­ing to Perth next week.

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