Josh Widdicombe: The joy of live stand-up
Josh Widdicombe is back on the road doing his first love '“ stand-up comedy.
The co-host of The Last Leg, brings his UK tour to Scotland next month with dates at the Alhambra Theatre, Dunfermline, on Monday, November 7 and the Kings Theatre, Glasgow, on Tuesday 8th.
And he’s looking forward to getting back on stage.
“I love stand-up,” he said. “I think of myself as a stand-up. It’s not like a proper job, but it’s what I do. Other things just happen to me, and they have all come out of my stand-up.
‘’And because I haven’t been on tour for a while, I feel so rejuvenated.”
Josh confesses to enjoying the process of touring.
“I really like the lifestyle, and I really like travelling around the UK. It’s a very pleasant way to see the country. It’s really interesting to see where people come from and then talk to them about those places.
“It’s also quite a meditative way to spend your time. When you know you’re going to be in a car for the next four hours driving to tonight’s venue, your day is prescribed. You think, ‘This is going to happen’. So you just sit there and chat because you can’t do anything else. It’s actually very stress-free.”
A familiar face on panel shows such Have I Got News For You and Mock The week, Josh also has also worked extensively in radio, but making an audience laugh remains a pleasure.
“That interaction with the audience is what keeps the show lively and it’s what keeps you interested as a performer. If you’re doing a show for fifty nights, it’s very nice to make every show a bit different. That way, each night feels like a one-off for that particular audience.
“It’s really good to create the sense that something’s happening that night which is not happening anywhere else. To do a completely rehearsed show would seem odd. You might as well send the audience the DVD. It’s important to remember it’s live entertainment.”
The tour – billed “What Do I Do Now? ...”? – will look back at his life in Devon, and the contrast to appearing on stage and TV.
“As a stand-up, you naturally talk about what’s interesting you, so I’ll be discussing what’s annoying me right now.
“But I’ll also be doing a lot about growing up in Devon in the 1990s. At my primary school, there were only four children in my year. It was a very different experience from a lot of other people’s. So I’ll be doing some comparing and contrasting with how I live now.”
As he tours, BBC3 will also be airing his new sitcom, ‘Josh’ which is based on his life before the big time.
, “The main character is called Josh and it’s based on me five years ago. It’s me when I wasn’t as successful and was living in a shared house. It’s about the trials and tribulations of that.
“The sitcom Josh is not a success. He’s single and frustrated with his life. He’s a character who’s trapped - that’s what all sitcoms boil down to. I don’t want to watch anyone else being successful, and I don’t want to put viewers through that, either!!
‘’I didn’t want to create something high-concept. Like my stand-up, it’s about my life. I’m not going to set it in a lighthouse because I don’t know what that’s like. The way I work makes it easier to write because the raw material’s all there.”