Jan 20, 2020

This is a box: writing new comedy material and calling everybody Doris

What a busy week. As well as putting some Electronic Sound deadlines to bed, I hosted my own quiz show.

Kind of.

On Saturday, I took to the stage for Mother's Ruin, a queer cabaret night that regularly sells out at the Royal Exchange. At the weekend, at Manchester's Hope Mill Theatre / Turn On Festival, I performed my first full fifteen minutes of new material since I began developing my Seven Inch show in 2017. And boy, it was hard work.

"You don't have to go to the effort of devising new material," said the organisers.

"No, I really have to," I said with a crazed look in my eyes.

Blow me down with a feather duster, it went well. Wonderfully fun. I can't recreate the chaos through the medium of blog text, so here is a vague description of my performance: an LGBTQ quiz derailed by pre-recorded malfunctioning audio beyond-terrible celebrity impressions, two startled contestants I insisted on calling Doris throughout, a mystery box labelled "this is a box", and a surreal use of a cartoon God.

It was a move away from my music themes of previous performances, but I still managed to get in references to Kylie Minogue, Sam Smith and, er, Skrillex. One of the comedic conceits was that I decided that each round should have its own theme tune, so I wrote a bunch especially for the performance. At the end of this blog post is a montage of the "theme tunes" plus my walk-off music, and brief but surprising mention of a modern queer icon.

If you read this in time, Mother's Ruin are back at Hope Mill Theatre this coming weekend — get tickets here.

I'm writing this bog post while listening to 808 State's 1993 album Gorgeous, which was very much my spirit animal when I was younger. I remember wearing the band's 'Gorgeous' t-shirt everywhere I went. Once a show-off, always a show-off...

Further Fats: Live latest – Royal Exchange, Mother's Ruin, the Spoken Word Showcase (2014)

Further Fats: Fats at the Lowry – a Curious trip to the North East (2017)

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