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TEZ Talks is the debut Edinburgh show by British Muslim Tez Ilyas, one of the hottest rising stars on the comedy circuit. AAA caught up with Tez for a chat.
- How has your Fringe been so far?
Really very excellent! Enjoying it a lot. Trying to keep a level-head between the shows.
- Tell us about the show you’re in…
It’s a satire. It’s basically presenting my life as a Muslim in Britain in 2015, but in a slightly silly, what if you were in my shoes kinda way.
- What’s the audience reaction been like?
Really positive thankfully! I keep being told it’s a brave show, but the people who see it really take to it and I hope that continues…
- When did you realise you were funny?
When people laughed at things I said and did.
- Were you the class clown?
Oh very much so, and I thoroughly enjoyed the notoriety.
- Can comedians get away with saying things no one else can?
I think so. Because you can ultimately say… ‘Well, it was only a joke mate’. David Cameron doesn’t really have that luxury.
- Was there a comedian who inspired you?
These days, I’d say Stewart Lee, but in the past, Chris Rock and Dave Chapelle too.
- Are there any other shows on this year’s you’d recommend?
God yes! Dane Baptiste, Sarah Callaghan, Aatif Nawaz, Tiernan Dioueb, Mike Wozniak and Fern Brady.
- What’s on your hit-list to see?
Nick Cody I’m hearing good things about, so wanna check him out, and Kraken.
- What do you like to do in Edinburgh on your day off?
I saw Austentatious, ate ice cream and fudge, smoked shisha and just evaluated my life choices.
- Can you recommend a bar or restaurant in Edinburgh?
I really like Mother India Cafe and Ten to 10.
- What’s the strangest thing you’ve seen this year?
Margaret Thatcher Queen of Soho. I loved it, but it has to be seen to be believed!
Tez Ilyas: TEZ Talks, Pleasance Courtyard (Venue 33), until August 30, 7.15pm, £12 (£10), www.edfringe.com
Questions: Gary Flockhart