10 Questions with Comedian : Micky P Kerr – Britain’s Got Talent Finalist 2018
1. Hi Micky, thanks for your time today. Tell me about your journey as a stand up?
OK. I started as a musician, I did mainly folky type stuff but I always did comedy songs and spoken word. Eventually I decided to make the move into stand up (about 10 years after I should have). That was 2014, I’ve never looked back. My stage confidence was there immediately cause I’d been gigging for ten years previous but my craft as a comic wasn’t and I’ve been on a learning curve ever since. I’ve become quite consistent now but sometimes it goes wrong (see final of BGT 2018!).
2. How has life changed since appearing on Britain’s got Talent?
It’s meant I do loads of selfies all the time, at gigs, in the street and at home (that’s just pure vanity though). It’s really got my name out there and I’m headlining shows now, I’m also getting better gigs. The highlights of post BGT are selling out The Brudenell in Leeds to an amazing crowd, selling out the Brude has always been a little ambition of mine and I couldn’t have done that without that massive exposure. Also appearing at The Leadmill is pretty exciting for me because it’s a venue I know well, I’ve been going for years and played there as a musician. However, this time it’s my solo show, I’m the one people are paying to see and that’s an amazing feeling. It’s a great venue and I’m proud to have my name associated with it.
3. Was it a hard slog going through BGT with more comedians in the line up this year?
No I don’t think it made any difference. If I’m honest I think it may have been advantageous, although I knew that two comedians had already made the final so I had to win the public vote as the judges like a variety of acts to make through to the last round. The hardest part is making it into the live shows though, lots of acts did great auditions and didn’t even get aired. You need a bit of luck at that point and luckily for me David Walliams had my back.
4. What advice would you give to someone looking to start out in comedy?
Do as many gigs as you can initially, stage time is essential. Don’t be scared to fail, all the best comedians do bad gigs, the trick is to keep going and learn from your mistakes, or learn what works best for you. Different audiences like different types of humour, don’t think you’ve cracked it with one great gig and visa-versa.
5. What gets on your nerves at the moment?
That’s broad. I don’t like the way society has been sucked into screens at the moment, we’ve embraced new technologies but we’re Guinee Pigs, I feel like we’re more detached from one another and people seem more polarized than ever before. It’s not the case at all, but social media makes it seem so. Social media is pissing me off mate, come to my gig and lets get drunk and laugh together.
6. What’s been your biggest challenge as a comedian?
Making people laugh mate. You’ve got to get the start right, the first 30 seconds is the biggest – get that right and the rest of the gig falls into place. You’ve got to win the audience’s trust ASAP.
7. What’s the worst experience you have encountered on stage?
My worst experience. It was my first ever bad gig, I’d been going a matter of months and my material was let’s say ‘edgy’. I played a 5 minute set and literally no one laughed. I hadn’t developed any material that would work to a crowd of people aged 60+ at that stage. It was a huge wake up call. I still think about that gig, I think in the long run it really improved me as a comic. Someone once threw a shoe at me as well, it sounds worse than it was. It was a nice shoe as well.
8. How easy is it to juggle your family and life on the road?
It’s not easy at all mate, weekends are when you’re away and weekends are normally family time. I have to book weekends off way in advance and even then a gig comes in that’s too good to turn down. You need to have an understanding partner. Part of being a pro comedian is accepting the long lonely missions you’ve got to do across the country, part of being a family is also making time for them so it’s a constant juggling process. A nice problem to have though.
9. What are your thoughts on a perception that musical comedy is easier than straight stand up?
I think it’s correct, I think it’s way easier. I do a fair bit of chatting as well but when I pick the guitar up the energy levels instantly change. If you’re not playing a musical instrument you’ve got to be able to do that independently. That is harder…
10. What’s next for Micky P Kerr?
Loads more gigs, a UK tour and more improving as a stand up. I’d love to get into radio, some irons in the fire there. I must admit I’d also like to release some music one day as well but for now I’m focused on comedy and making people laugh.
Micky is playing The Leadmill, Sheffield on the 31st Aug, Tickets available HERE