A Wee Blether With Chris Forbes

The award-win­ning comic is branch­ing out with a new show at the Fringe

The Scots Magazine - - Contents -

A Wee Blether With…

Is it true that you dis­cov­ered your love for com­edy via bas­ket­ball?

Yeah, it was a slightly un­usual route. I was a mad keen bas­ket­ball player. I played for Scotland at un­der-16 level and spent my last year of high school in Wash­ing­ton State where I had as­pi­ra­tions of go­ing on to play in the NBA. At the end of term they had a school tal­ent con­test. I went along in my kilt and a “See You Jimmy” hat and told funny sto­ries about the dif­fer­ences be­tween Amer­ica and Scotland. I re­alised that I liked the buzz of be­ing on stage even more than I liked bas­ket­ball. I was hooked.

You’re known as Fun­time Forb­sey – are you a bit of a party an­i­mal?

It’s a nick­name that’s come back to haunt me a few times! My fam­ily did have a lot of par­ties. In ev­ery friend­ship group there’s some­one with bin­fuls of emp­ties af­ter the week­end – and that was me! The Frank Skinner TV Show was on around this time and he was known as Fun­time Frankie. A cou­ple of my mates just adapted it for me and it stuck.

Has the nick­name ever proved trou­ble­some?

When I got an in­ter­view for drama col­lege, the very first thing the di­rec­tor of the course said was, “So, Fun­time Forb­sey is your email ad­dress?” If I’d have known I was go­ing to come un­der so much scru­tiny I’d have gone with Depend­able Forb­sey or Hard-work­ing Forb­sey!

Your stand-up shows are usu­ally based on real life. What’s this year’s Fringe show about?

It’s called Proph­esy and it’s all about my ex­tra­or­di­nary en­counter with a man who claims to be the son of God. I want to stress that it’s def­i­nitely not a re­li­gious show. It’s based around my recorded in­ter­views with this guy. His an­swers cause me to ques­tion all sorts of things in my life and look at things from a dif­fer­ent per­spec­tive. It’s ex­is­ten­tial com­edy – per­fect for the Fringe!

Char­lie Mcin­tosh, the char­ac­ter you play in Scot Squad is a bit of a coun­try bump­kin. Who did you base him on?

He’s ac­tu­ally not un­like my younger self. My own back­ground is as ru­ral as it gets. My mum’s fam­ily are from Poolewe – my gran still lives there. Dad was from Gair­loch. He had a camp­site there and it was a bril­liant place to run wild when we were grow­ing up. We’d get all the sum­mer hol­i­day jobs like keep­ing the site tidy and paint­ing the stones round all the pitches.

Any fa­mous guests at the site?

I was at an au­di­tion a while back and was thrilled to meet Rory Mccann. He plays San­dor “The Hound” Cle­gane in Game of Thrones and is a bit of a hero of mine. He heard me men­tion Gair­loch and told me he’d stayed in a bril­liant camp­site up there quite a few times. It was ours! I was so chuffed.

Is it true you write love songs for your fi­ancée, Eleanor?

It is true – she doesn’t al­ways like them, though! I’ve writ­ten silly wee songs on all sorts of sub­jects and used them in mu­si­cal in­ter­ludes in my shows. They’ve achieved cult-like sta­tus! There’s none this year. She’s might­ily re­lieved! Chris Forbes: Prophecy; The Gilded Bal­loon, 19.45. Aug 1-12, 14-27.

Above left: As Char­lie in Scot Squad Above: Rory Mccann as The Hound in Game of Thrones Left: Chris was raised in Gair­loch

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