Multi award-winning comedian Ian Smith (BBC3’s Sweat the Small Stuff, Dave’s The Magic Sponge podcast) returns with his sixth solo show for Edinburgh Fringe. It’s part one of a one-part show about halves, love and a holiday to Chernobyl. He spoke with The Fountain about the show and his plans for whilst in Edinburgh.
TF: You are performing at the Edinburgh Fringe this year, how excited are you?
I’m very excited – I love performing at the Fringe and I think this will be my best show so far. Every now and then I will smell something that reminds me of the Fringe and I get a weird excitement-mixed-with-stress sort of feeling – often it’s the smell of damp which reminds me of some venues, although sometimes it might be some soap in a pub that my brain somehow remembers from the Fringe and then all of a sudden I’m thinking about flyering and sound cues.
TF: Your show certainly sounds intriguing, what is the premise?
The show is about stress – the things that stress me out and the ways people try and stop stress. This year my brother and I went on holiday to Chernobyl, which was quite stressful. I also entered a Scrabble tournament, which I actually found more stressful than visiting a nuclear wasteland.
TF: And what drove the project, where do your influences lie?
Last year just after the Fringe, my fiancée and I had to postpone our wedding – the show is basically about that, but via all these other things. Really, I think the show is about love (but I’m going about it in a very silly way). It’s a very personal show for me.
TF: What are your plans for the Fringe, having been before are there any tips or musts you would offer to first-time performers?
I’m going to try and go to the gym more – and I also want to check out Edinburgh Food Studio as I’ve heard amazing things (and I’m hoping they Google themselves, see this and give me loads of free food). I recommend going to a gym with a steam room – there’s something magical about steam for relaxation. Sometimes people (probably the staff) put eucalyptus or lavender in it (I’m not sure how) and that’s an absolute dream. This year, I’m going to take some dim sum with me and cook it in there while I relax.
TF: And what are your future plans, beyond the Fringe?
I’m really proud of the show, so I’ll hopefully get to tour it around – and I’d would love to return to New Zealand Comedy Festival again, or get to go to Australia and perform there. I have a few scripts and ideas I’m working on so I’ll focus on those for a little bit too and just generally keep plugging away at comedy!
You can see Half-Life at Underbelly Buttercup from 31st July – 25th August (not 12th) at 5:15pm. For tickets, please visit www.edfringe.com