Martin Walker catches up with the lovely stand-up and actor Ian Smith. They discuss Ian’s new Edinburgh Fringe show, Flappable, which is about uncertainty… or is it? Well yes, it is.
“It’s a collection of stories and silliness from my life that somehow all link together. There’ll be bits about Harold Bishop, tarpaulin and massages. There will also be some mysteries, a video and some philosophising going on. I once had a line of dialogue in a BBC2 drama and was denied a spoon on a train – so the show has emotional depth too.”
You had your Fringe debut last year. How did that go?
“You guys gave it a solid 4 stars. I found it enjoyable and stressful in equal measure. Performing an hour of your own stuff for a month is brilliant, but it’s very tiring too! I also ate too many hog roasts and at one point I fell asleep on a step. I didn’t like the clothes hangers in my flat, so I had that to contend with as well.”
How do you describe your comedy?
“Pre-planned conversational shambolism – with different trousers to last year.”
You’re a TV actor as well as being a stand-up. Which do you prefer?
“I really love doing both. I’d love to do more acting – I recently filmed The Ark – a forthcoming BBC1 Noah’s Ark adaptation – which was probably the most serious thing I’ve done. But, stand-up is something I would never stop doing as long as I feel like I’m improving. I really want to write a sitcom and am working on ideas for that. In an ideal world I’d write and star in a film where I play all the characters – like Eddie Murphy in Norbit.
If you were curating a stand up show for television, who would be your guests?
Hannibal Buress, Tim Key, Nick Mohammed, Alex Horne, The Pin and Will Seaward would read a story at some point. I’d probably need something original about the show to sell it to a channel, so each week I’d like to the show to be filmed from the mansion of a different dictator – with a possible tour in between sets.