Q&A with Famous British Funny Guy Russell Howard

Ahead of his stand up tour, Russell Howard: Round The World

by SHFamily | Thu, May 18, 2017

If you're a fan of comedy and want to have a bit of a laugh, we had a chat with famous comedian, television/radio presenter and actor Russell Howard. Russell is best known for his TV Show Russell Howard's Good News which was also an award winning BBC Comedy Show. Ahead of his stand up tour in Shanghai on May 25th, see what he has to say! 

SF: What’re you most looking forward to/anxious about when you play in Shanghai?

RH: I'm looking forward to exploring Shanghai and then having a chat to the audience about it. When I told my Mum I was doing a gig in China my mum said "in English?", to which I replied “probably” … I love the fact that my mum thought I had hidden my ability to speak Mandarin!


SF: How did you get into comedy?

RH: I was obsessed with comedy as a kid and had been writing jokes in a tatty notebook for years. Then one day, when I was 18, I went into Bristol and asked to perform that night. They let me on, the gig went great and my world changed forever.


SF: What prompted the world tour?

RH: The madness of the world! Every day it seems like another absurd or shocking story seems to fly out of the TV into my face and stand up is the best way of making sense of all this mania.


SF: How do you feel about performing China’s biggest stand-up show ever? Why Shanghai?

RH: I feel very excited, I just hope my humor travels. I've performed in England, America, Canada, Scandinavia, Australia. So, why not give Shanghai a whirl?


SF: Have you adapted your material for the Chinese audience?

RH: I'll just do my thing and we'll see how we get on. It’s got me this far!


SF: What was the biggest way you ever bombed and how did you handle it?

RH: The strangest moment was when I was doing a Christmas show in Essex and a woman threw a sex toy at me. I had a penis shaped bruise on my face for a week, it was like the strangest battle scar ever. I haven't bombed for a long time. It’s pretty hard to die at the 02. If there is 15,000 people there to see you, it’s going to be ok.


SF: Any subjects that are off-limits? How long do you have to wait before making a joke about a tragedy? One week? One year?

RH: Joking is often how we deal with tragedy isn't it? So nah, nothing’s off limit.

SF: Why does the UK produce so many good stand-up comedians?

RH: Because it rains a lot and there is a lot to moan about.


SF: Who comprises most of your audience?

RH: Anyone from 16 - 80. If they’re up for a laugh and don't mind a bit of filth from time to time.


SF: Why do you think you’ve had such appeal in a wide variety of countries?

RH: No idea really. I just keep churning it out and people seem to enjoy it.


SF: Worst heckler ever? I’ve heard a lot of comedians say the hecklers actually aren’t that bad, it’s the people who just sit there arms folded, staring at you blankly. Is that true for you?

RH: The worst was definitely the lady that slung her sex toy at me. A friend of mine was also once given a noose by somebody at a festival.


SF: Most underrated comedy scene you’ve encountered during your world tour? Toughest crowd?  

RH: Toughest crowd was Nashville but we got there in the end. My favourite place to play was probably Manchester in England – we had 18,000 people in and my dad was there too, so that was pretty amazing.


SF: Advice you wish someone had given you before you started comedy?

RH: Don't get nervous when you’re young, just enjoy it.

Special thanks to Kung Fu Komedy


Looking for tickets? You can find them on City Weekend.