Fred Cooke brings his new comedy show to the Civic on Sat. 7th April and we had comedy chats with him in advance of the show!
Can you tell us a bit about your background?
Where did you grow up? I grew up in Kells, Co Meath. I was trying to explain it’s location to Americans last year. What I wanted to say was I grew up in the east of Ireland and also in the middle. What I ended up saying was i grew up in the Middle-East.
Who were your earliest comedy influences?
Robin Williams. Everything about him was hilarious. From his accents, improve, and facial expressions, he could do it all.
How did you get into the comedy business?
There’s no real direct route. For me it was doing unpaid open spots that eventually started paying. Then I got ask to do big festivals like the Cat Laughs and The Vodafone Comedy Festival. Industry started to take an interest in me then.
Can you tell us a bit more about the show Fredliner?
This show is really about my adventures supporting Tommy Tiernan and going out on my own. Physical story telling embraced with musical nostalgia.
Where do your material?
Everywhere. By reading, listening to music, hanging out with friends. I’ll put ideas into the note app of my phone. Then sit down and go through them. A certain amount of pressure with a deadline is a good way to come up with stuff.
How do you deal with hecklers?
I don’t really. Ignoring them is always a good start. It all depends on the intent of a heckle. If they continue, I’ll go to town on them. Not actually head into town with them.
What advice would you give new comedians starting out?
You have to enjoy it. Even when you don’t get paid. Enjoy The travel, get comedy mates. Be sound to people more successful than you as you are and try not to get jealous. Stand up comedy is about the relationship with you and the audience. Not about trying to better than specific comedians.
What has been the highlight of your career so far?
There’s loads. As I’m writing this as I’m about to go on stage in Beijing, China so that’s an incredible experience. Supporting Tommy Tiernan around Ireland was incredible. I love my job so been able to work on a day to day basis is a highlight in itself.
Do you get nervous before performing?
A bit. But that shows that you care. I’ve programmed myself to do breathing exercises just before I go on stage. That relaxes me to a level of comfort where I’m in control of my breath and comical phrasing.
Are you looking forward to your gig at the Civic?
I can’t wait. I love coming back with a new material. This time I’m headlining my own show hence the name Fredliner. It’s a beautiful theatre so it’s always an absolute pleasure to perform there.
that The Civic is my first stop. I’ll definitely be getting a spicebag after the show too!
Fred Cooke- Fredliner
Saturday 7th April