Fringe Q&A: Scott Bennett

Rob Brydon tour support, BBC News Quiz writer, The Chris Ramsey Show writer and Amused Moose Edinburgh Award nominee Scott Bennett is performing at the Fringe with an honest and hilarious new show.

AAA caught up with Scott for a chat in between shows.

How has your Fringe been so far?

It’s been great fun so far, audiences have been great and the room has been busy. I’m not sick of the show either, which really helps. I’m enjoying having the family with me too. It’s keeping me on the right side of sane!

Tell us about the show you’re in…

The show is about what it feels like to follow your dreams when you feel like you have too much to lose. It’s effectively a story about what happened last year when I decided to quit a career to be a professional comic. It’s told in three sections which cover the build up to the decision, how I coped in the months after (spoiler alert: not very well!) and how my life has changed as a result. There are also stories about some brief celebrity encounters, the love a man has for his shed, and why playing crazy golf with a seven-year-old is a terrible idea.

 What’s the audience reaction been like?

Really good so far. I think the theme of following your dreams has really resonated with people of a certain age and the reveal halfway through the show is having much more of an impact than it did in the previews, which shows how you can never recreate the spirit of a festival.

When did you realise you were funny?

I didn’t really find that I was funny until I was about 15. Even then it was just recreating things I’d heard on my favourite programmes and material of my favourite comics. I suppose the first time I realised it was when we were hanging round with my friends at college and I tried to make them laugh, effectively I was treating every day like a comedy gig!

Were you the class clown?

No, quite the opposite actually. I was very shy and a bit of a nerd.

Can comedians get away with saying things no one else can?

I think there is the perception that this is true, but increasingly I think it is becoming less so. We are in a very sensitive time at the moment and I think that on stage comedians often forget the power that words can have. You have a responsibility when you step on a stage, which has to be balanced with being in the moment.

Was there a comedian who inspired you?

Many. Harry Hill, Sean Lock, but also any of the comedians who managed to balance being brilliant onstage while maintaining a successful family life.

Are there any other shows on this year’s you’d recommend?

Glenn Wool, Adam Rowe, Dan Nightingale, Mandy Knight.

What’s on your hit-list to see?

Kiri Mclean, Scott Capurro, Tom Stade, Jerry Sadowitz.

What do you like to do in Edinburgh on your day off?

This year I recorded a podcast with Helen Lederer live from the BBC tent!

Can you recommend a bar or restaurant in Edinburgh?

City Cafe for all day breakfasts. Never beaten.

What’s the strangest thing you’ve seen this year?

A man flyering his show on a little trolley pulled by toy huskies. At least I think I’ve seen this, or I could be imagining it. Also I overheard someone order a deep-fried Mars Bar with no hint of appreciation about the risk they were taking with their own life.

Sell your show in no more than ten words….

Following your dreams and finding out who you really are.

Scott Bennett: Leap Year, 5:55pm, Just the Tonic Mash House, until 26 August, www.edfringe.com

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