We’re having a brilliant half term here at The Marlowe with Canterbury Children’s Festival. It’s lovely having a foyer full of happy children and an occasional appearance from a big blue monster too! There’s still a few days left with our last day this Saturday.
If you came to Comedy Club 4 Kids at the festival last year you may remember the very funny Tiernan Douieb. He’s back this year with his super silly comedy show Everything You’ve Ever Needed To Know Ever…And Some Extra Stuff, ready to impart some wisdom and most importantly, make your little ones laugh!
We caught up with Tiernan to find out what it’s like performing stand-up comedy to a younger audience.
What inspired you to create comedy for children?
James Campbell who created the Comedy Club 4 Kids asked me to try doing it after seeing some of my adult stand-up, which was, at the time, quite silly. I did one set at an early Comedy Club 4 Kids show in Camberwell and found it more fun than a lot of adult shows. I took over the Comedy Club 4 Kids along with two others after James Campbell wanted to pursue his solo career a few years ago and have since started writing my own solo kids shows too.
Do you remember your first experiences of seeing comedy as a child?
I can’t remember seeing live comedy, but I do remember managing to persuade my parents to let me watch some of the BBC show Friday Night Live when the likes of Alexei Sayle, Ben Elton and Harry Enfield were first starting out. I didn’t understand it all but I thought it seemed really exciting and when I did it get it, very very funny.
Any interesting heckling experiences with your family shows?
Lots. Just recently I’ve been asked ‘why aren’t you made of pepperoni?’ and yesterday a small boy shouted out of nowhere ‘my mum wants to sing a song.’ She didn’t. And she looked very embarrassed about it! Kids rarely maliciously heckle. It’s more something they just have to tell you. My ‘Everything Ever’ show really encourages children to shout things at me, so I’ve had some brilliantly odd comments during the run.
You studied here in Canterbury at the University of Kent. Do you have fond memories of the city? Does Canterbury have a funny bone?
I loved studying in Canterbury. I think it’s a such a beautiful town and yes it does have a very good sense of humour. I started stand-up comedy because of part of my Drama course taught by Dr Oliver Double, so nearly all my early gigs were in and around the city. They were loving, supportive and quite forgiving crowds in Canterbury, which I’m pleased about or I may not have been persuaded to continue doing it for a career!
What should audiences expect from Everything You’ve Ever Needed To Know Ever…And Some Extra Stuff?
It is an hour of very silly nonsense. I know everything there is to know ever, of course, and some more stuff than that and I have decided it’s only fair I use this knowledge to answer certain very important questions that children need to know answers to. I use a variety of drawings, have a couple of guests to help me on the way and hopefully solve some queries from the crowd.
And lastly, your favourite joke?
That’s a tough question. I recorded a Vine video when asked this question recently, of me telling a joke that always make me laugh, so probably this one.
Tiernan Douieb’s Everything You’ve Ever Needed To Know Ever…And Some Extra Stuff plays at The Marlowe Studio on Saturday 31 May at 11am as part of Canterbury Children’s Festival.
Canterbury Children’s Festival is sponsored by Lipscomb Volvo.