Comic Hal comes to festival
LIVE At The Apollo star Hal Cruttenden is bringing his ‘Chubster’ tour to Southport Comedy Festival this month – with the title of his tour given to him by his teenage daughters!
Cruttenden has risen to national fame having appeared on panel shows such as Have I Got News For You and Mock The Week, but it is live shows that he views as the pinnacle.
He said: “I’m very much looking forward to it.
“The longer you go on the better you get, every time I’ve done a new one I’ve thought this is my best yet. “It’s what most people do comedy for. ‘‘A lot of people tend to think people do comedy to get on TV and on panel shows – rubbish. The reason they do those panel shows is to get people to buy tickets to their live shows.”
It will be Cruttenden’s first apperance at the festival, and he is relishing the opportunity to take part in the spectacle.
“I do as many festivals as possible because the audience tend to be in that zone.
“At your normal tour gig you have people coming to see you, and if you’ve been a comic on the circuit doing clubs for years, it’s always fantastic to be doing your own show, the biggest reward for getting more successful as a comic is touring, when you tour you do your own show after years of walking up and nobody knows who you are.
“When you have your own show people do know who you are and they come to see you, and that’s fantastic.
“We are usually just doing one night, flying in and out, but it is nice to have that festival atmosphere.
“The biggest one is Edinburgh which is all-encompassing, it almost takes it too far, you can’t escape it.
“It’s nice to go to the smaller ones because it is exciting to have the comedy but you can get away from it, but Edinburgh is a month, a little more hard core, harder to escape from.
“I started the tour at Edinburgh, I did a month there doing a play and then my show in the evening, so it was heavy.”
The name of the show, ‘Chubster’, was decided on by his teenage daughters, who have proven to be inspirational to the show as a whole.
“My show is called ‘Chubster’, so I do a lot about weight, a lot about family but I don’t even realise that until I sit down and look at the show I’ve got.
“I never set out and plan to do a sort of show – I often start like that but actually you just end up with the best stuff you’ve written recently, and I find that I write quite a lot about my daughters, because they’re now teenagers, comparing them being teenagers to me as a teenager, it’s weirdly a lot about death.
“There’s so much death, but it’s never sad.
“I always think the best comedy has real darkness, but you never sit down and say I’m going to make it sad.
“I talk a lot about death, family a lot of politics.
“I dip in and out of politics because I’m not a totally political comic, I’m just a comic who’s a little bit obsessed with politics at the moment as everyone is.
“You’re trying to keep it out of your life, while doing a countdown to possibly the biggest economic challenge we’ve ever faced in our lifetime.
“It’s just sort of everything that’s been running through my head over the last two years.
“It’s taken me a year and a half to write this show, but it’s growing all the time, if I’m on tour it starts as an hour and then gets to an hour and 20, an hour and 30, because I keep on writing.
“You have that first album, the difficult second album, then by the time you get to the fourth and fifth that’s when you’re coming into your own.”
He added that he was impressed by the other comedians who are completing the line up, and gave his professional opinion on who to look out for.
“Looking at the Southport Comedy Festival website, everyone is there, it’s all so good!
“Phill Jupitus, Phil Nichol, Zoe Lyons I always love, and I’m a massive fan of Tom Binns.”
See Hal Cruttenden, Chubster Tour at The Bold Hotel, Lord Street, Southport, on Saturday, October 20.
Tickets £13.50 available direct from the venue or visit: www.southportcomedyfestival.com
Hal: ‘‘I do a lot about weight’’