Gearoid Farrelly brings his brilliant comedy show ‘Home Truths’ to the Civic next week.  We had a chat with him in advance of the show!

Can you tell us a little bit about where you grew up?
I grew up in Glasnevin and went to school in Finglas. I lived in Cedarwood which is famous for being where Bono lived. I never knew his exact house but Niamh Kavanagh lived around the corner which I always felt was far more impressive.

Who were your earliest comedy influences?
I have always loved comedy but never thought of it as a route for me. I weirdly I always thought it was a thing women did. My sisters and mother were hilarious and growing up I loved “The Golden Girls”, “French and Saunders”, “Absolutely Fabulous” and Victoria Wood. I also loved Lily Savage. I used to come home from school at lunch time and watch videos while I having my soup.

How did you get into the comedy business?
It was a total accident. I was doing a lot of acting. I was in plays and musicals and did two solo acting shows “Mystery School” and “A Chip In The Sugar” by Alan Bennett. I used to love writing stuff and doing comedy characters then I found out about the open mic circuit where you could get seven minutes and try out stuff. So I started doing that. Then stopped. But I had a gig I had forgotten about and when I realised I had forgotten most of the character stuff so I decided to write a standup set to do as myself. It went really well and they asked me to do another one. After that I won a couple of competitions and then got an agent. But for the first year I was always giving it up!

How do you deal with hecklers?
It depends on the heckler. If they are fun and it’s something that is adding to the show it’s great.  Most hecklers are usually really good natured. But some just want to ruin the gig.  I usually  have a go at them and on the rare occasion that doesn’t work I just throw them out myself. I have frog-marched many a drunk to the exit myself.  I’ve no patience for someone that is disrupting a show. It’s hard enough for people to get out for a night without some tool ruining the show you paid to see.

What advice would you give new comedians starting out?
When you decide to try it put the date in the diary for a few months time and do a bit of work every day towards getting ready. The skill of comedy is making it look unrehearsed and relaxed. At the start it is your job to learn but people are paying in so everyone has a job to do no matter how new you are. Make sure you have spent time writing the stuff and learning it off.  DO NOT DO ANOTHER COMEDIANS MATERIAL. This is a sure fire way to ruin your career before you have even begun. No matter how successful you become you will always be known as the joke-thief.  In this game your integrity is absolutely everything. When I started I didn’t tell anyone for ages so it was my little secret. That made it really exciting and also it took the pressure off.

What has been the highlight of your career so far?
Supporting Joan Rivers on tour will always be hard to beat. We had a ball and she was a lovely lady. Also playing very big rooms in the UK on tour with Sarah Millican is always really exciting.  I really enjoyed making “Meet Your Neighbours” with PJ Gallagher. We had a blast working on it, some days we got into trouble because we laughed so much when we were filming it. The outtakes still make me laugh. They are on YouTube if you fancy a giggle.

Tell us about your podcast “Fascinated”?
My podcast is absolutely my favourite thing that I do! It is a lot of work so I only manage to get about one episode a month made. The idea is I chat to people that I am a fan of now or was a fan of as a teenager… they are my favourite ones! Then I track them down and we have a chat. I have had some amazing guests.  I went to Carol Decker’s (from t’pau) house and had a bit too much wine.  I chatted to a singer from The Honeyz who is now a mid-wife. I sang with Carnie from Wilson Phillips. In the most recent series I met Kelle from Eternal and went to visit James Dreyfus from “Gimme Gimme Gimme” and Ben Adams from a1. If you are under 30 none of this will make any sense!

I am making a new series at the moment. But if you like you can listen to previous episodes here. It’s free!

Your website says that you are a writer and actor… can you tell us about anything your writing or acting in currently?
I am currently writing a few different things. I am working on a series with Kathleen O’Rourke who wrote a short that got an Oscar nomination. It’s a radio sitcom based on sketches we used to do years ago. We have done secret readings of the script and audiences seem to love it and so do the BBC which is very nice! I am also just finishing another sitcom script and have also written a radio drama.

As regards acting I used to do tonnes of plays and musicals around Dublin.
As far as I can remember I was in “Copacabana”, “Hot Mikado” and “High Society” in the Civic.

What was it like supporting Joan Rivers?
It was brilliant and terrifying. She was so lovely to be around we got on very well. I think she just liked other comedians. We had lots of chats about writing and working out new material. She also told me amazing Hollywood gossip. In Brighton the gig was being filmed for her TV series in front of 5000 people. That was great fun but stressful because there were literally so many TV people and a big entourage backstage.  But it was lovely and we had a great time.  She gave me so much brilliant advice mainly it’s a privilege to be doing it so work really, really hard and I do! I think I have had made 5 days off this year.

Tell us a random fact about yourself…
Weirdly I am a really good cook. I don’t know how or why but stuff I make always seems to work out.  But I would hate to work in a restaurant. The first time someone sent a dinner back I would beat them to death with the plate


Gearoid Farrelly- Home Truths

Saturday 21st October, 8.15pm
Tickets €12