I don’t do dead­pan, I’m very ef­fu­sive. I fill the stage

Aussie comic Felic­ity Ward tells MAR­ION Mc­MULLEN how she’s been squir­relling away jokes for her Bust­ing A Nut tour

Hayes & Harlington Gazette - - Spotlight -

Was it easy to find a squir­rel suit for your tour pho­tos?

I GOT it on­line from an Amer­i­can cos­tume shop. It’s in­cred­i­ble and there’s some­thing very homey about putting on a squir­rel suit. (Laughs) It is ev­ery­thing I am.

I am tak­ing my­self se­ri­ously in the photo, but I’m in a squir­rel suit ... and high heels. It’s a fash­ion con­scious squir­rel.

Is it the weird­est thing you’ve worn?

TO be fair, no. Ac­tu­ally, sadly, it’s quite the op­po­site. I was do­ing a DJ set wear­ing a leop­ard print leo­tard with big ex­ter­nal shoul­der pads and a padded tail at the back when I first met my hus­band.

I have a suf­fragette out­fit as well, but I’m not go­ing to bring the squir­rel on tour. I took the suit to Ed­in­burgh think­ing I would wear it and it didn’t hap­pen. And if it’s not go­ing to hap­pen in Ed­in­burgh... well.

I have too many clothes, but I love those vac­uum stor­age bags. I pack all the clothes away and then go and buy more.

As one of the Fringe’s favourite comics, what’s your best tip for sur­viv­ing the fes­ti­val?

I HAVE per­formed at Ed­in­burgh eight times now, but this sum­mer was the best ever. I was old when I started – well, old for com­edy.

I started do­ing stand up when I was 27 or 28 and I was 29 when I did my first Ed­in­burgh.

There were chil­dren out there aged 19 and 20 also do­ing the Fringe Fes­ti­val at the same time. I made the mis­take back then of try­ing to see every gig and peo­ple were say­ing ‘why are you cry­ing?’ There is a limit to how much you can do.

I swim, that is how I ex­er­cise, but it’s hard when it’s cold and Ed­in­burgh even in the sum­mer is not hot. So I spent time this year do­ing yoga, which was great.

How would you de­scribe your Bust­ing A Nut show?

(LAUGHS) It’s an hour of jokes, that’s all. I don’t do dead­pan. I’m very ef­fu­sive. I fill the stage.

I used to have a theme, a story, a mo­tif, but I hadn’t done a show for two years and I worked on ma­te­rial and came up with a hour of jokes.

If peo­ple saw my Net­flix spe­cial talk­ing about IBS and anx­i­ety and come along ex­pect­ing men­tal health ma­te­rial, well, I men­tion it once or twice and the rest of the show is what has hap­pened since then – I got mar­ried, I started do­ing hot yoga, be­came ad­dicted to In­sta­gram. It’s the fun­ni­est show I’ve ever done.

What was it like mov­ing in with your in-laws af­ter you got mar­ried?

IT was how to save money and ruin a re­la­tion­ship. We moved into his par­ents’ house for about 10 or 11 months and moved out about a year ago.

They are great peo­ple and, as for liv­ing with some­one’s par­ents goes, it was as good as it gets. But I’m 37 and ev­ery­one has a limit. I couldn’t walk out of the bed­room in my un­der­pants and I spend a lot of time in my un­der­pants – that’s why the cen­tral heat­ing is on. That’s what it’s meant for.

His par­ents are also like Costco life­time plat­inum card hold­ers. They go all the time and buy in bulk. I found 109 pa­per rolls of toi­let pa­per in the garage.

I didn’t want them to catch me, but I went in and counted them all. And all these rolls were for only four peo­ple liv­ing in the house.

My hus­band bought a six pack of Dove soap re­cently and I thought ‘this is the slip­pery slope.’ How of­ten do you get home to Aus­tralia? I GET back be­tween once to five times a year, but I’ve not man­aged it so far this year and I’m not sure if I will.

I miss see­ing my niece grow up. She’s six and has only just learned to read and my sis­ter sends me videos all the time. They all came over for the wed­ding as well which was great.

I’ve 12 cousins on my mum’s side. My sis­ter is the el­dest and then there is me.

They were around 10 and I was in my 20s and I thought ‘I’m go­ing to be the cool cousin.’ No, I’m the weird cousin and I think the same thing is go­ing to hap­pen now.

I’m go­ing to be the weird aun­tie not the cool aun­tie. I’m go­ing to be the one my niece stays away from.

Do you have a golden rule for com­edy?

THE first thing is ‘is it funny or not?’. It’s got to be funny, I don’t want peo­ple to feel scared or yelled at. I’m not look­ing for a cheap joke to get laughs.

If I’m not talk­ing about per­sonal ex­pe­ri­ences then I need to be able to jus­tify the joke. My only guide­line is ‘is it funny enough?’ I want to be able to make peo­ple laugh.

Felic­ity Ward’s Bust­ing A Nut tour be­gins on Oc­to­ber 3. Go to fe­lic­i­ty­ward.com for de­tails.

I was do­ing a DJ set wear­ing a leop­ard print leo­tard with big ex­ter­nal shoul­der pads and a padded tail at the back when I first met my hus­band

Bust­ing a nut: Felic­ity Ward Felic­ity with­out her squir­rel suit

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