Daphna Baram, AKA MissD, is an Israel-born human rights lawyer come journalist. She’s been gigging relentlessly in the UK and Ireland and has taken shows to Brighton, Edinburgh and Leicester Fringe festivals.. Martin Walker exchanges emails about her new Edinburgh Fringe show.
“AKA MissD is an invitation to spend an hour in my world and hear my story, my thoughts, my pet peevs, my catastrophes, my excesses and my little triumphs. I was a soldier, a teacher, a news editor, an activist, a writer, a human rights lawyer, a journalist and a comedian. I lived in Jerusalem at its bloodiest and London at its smuggest, I had a heart attack, I am coming to grips with aging and I have some things to say about foxes, wars and cougaring. It’ll be fun.”
Why did you choose to perform as part of Freestival?
“I had a chat with my builder, Jools Constant, while he was tiling my bathroom – amazing job by the way – and he told me about that new enterprise he was involved in, Freestival. I love new enterprises and really wanted to have a great run in Edinburgh this year, and I was taken by his enthusiasm. I also liked the fact that Freestival seem to not want to quarrel with the other promoters, and are willing to collaborate. They don’t say ‘do not apply for a venue with any other promoter’, they say – ‘apply with everybody and take the best room you’re offered’. And they offered the better room.”
For you, is Stand-Up Comedy a career choice or a calling?
“The way I look at it, it is my current adventure, and I will keep at it for as long as I enjoy it and others enjoy me in it. I started comedy at the age of forty after I had a heart attack, I’m aware I’m never going to be a skipping skinny-jeansed boy with a funky haircut on telly, but I also know that stand up is all about finding your audience, and them finding you. I have met quite a few lovely samples of that audience at the Fringe last year when I performed my first solo show Killing Miss D and I’m hoping for more to join this delicious club this summer.”
Have you ever gone too far?
“My whole life is about going too far, about flirting with excess, taking risks, falling flat on my face, bouncing back up again with a few bruises and a few lessons learned… until the next time. I talk a lot about those going-too-far cases in my show. Come check it out, and don’t try it at home.
If you were curating a stand up show for television, who would be your guests?
“Bill Bailey, Stewart Lee, Tommy Tiernan and Ava Vidal. And newer comics Sameena Zehra (Homicidal Pacifist, The Stand), Giada Garofalo, Gary Lynch (Missed Life Crisis, Yurt Locker), Gary Sansome and Andrew Gilmore (Bombs, Booze and Haggis, Kasbar) and Dane Baptiste (Citizen Dane, Pleasance).”