After killing it at the Raw Comedy Quest last year, Becky Crouch has a group show in the NZ International Comedy Festival. The seriously funny up-and-comer deals to our quick-fire Q&A with ease.
I don't know about braver - the 10 minutes before you go on stage are always terrifying. But once I get on there, it all disappears and it becomes super fun because I get to make fun of the audience as well as myself! And I remember everyone's just there to have a good time.
Do you get nervous on stage?
Yes - less and less though every time I'm on. It's more exhilarating than nervous now actually. There's a lot to be said for having a trip to the loo before you go on. New jokes are especially horrifying because you have no way of knowing if the audience will like them or not. The more you do them, the more confident you get.
You donâ€™t only crack jokes, you sing and dance too?!
I haven't really danced (although there have been two occasions I tried on stage. My moves are ridiculous. Ly awesome.) I do sing, I have a guitar with me most of the time and have a few comedy songs up my sleeve. I'm trying to finish a comedy album this year and it's going to be called: "Niche Love Songs - There's Someone for Almost Everyone." I love doing songs because it's something different. Audiences love it too for some reason, so I'll keep on doing it :)
Tell us your coming out story again â€“ it all came down to meeting
a particular girl, right?
Yes and we are still together! She is the best. I gave up everything I knew to be with her and it's the best decision I've ever made. I used to be religious (which I refer to in some of my jokes) and now I'm definitely not. I'm proud of how far I've come in only a couple of years - my parents have the opposite opinion but that's OK, I still love and accept them even though they're homophobic. Maybe they're just going through a phase?
Where do you find your jokes? Everywhere?
Yes. I have a list on my phone I add to every now and again. Really good jokes take a bit of work, it's not normal that something you just think of in the shower turns into the finished product. I find lots of premises funny but they all need punchlines and the long list in my phone proves I don't spend enough time writing! On the other hand I find things I've written in there with no context which is sometimes hilarious in itself. "Herpes." "Secret Families" and "How do you know if it's sexual harassment?" Random.
Should we laugh at ourselves more?
Definitely! We're all going to be dead soon anyway so we might as well see the funny side of things. Sure I have occasional meltdowns like anyone, but I give myself ten minutes and then I get up and move on. (Sometimes I'll call my girl and whine to her until she tells me to get over it...) Sarah Millican (UK comic) said not to wallow in self-pity about a crappy gig past 11am the next day. It's great advice. I saw a meme the other day which said "oh, you find it offensive? I find it funny. That's why I'm happier than you!"
Who would you most like to give a good telling off?
People who try to force their opinions down other people's throats. That applies to religious people and also scientists, to homophobic people and also the gay community. Just shut up! Get on with your own life. I honestly don't give two hoots about what other people believe. And yes, I realise the irony of me enforcing my opinion that they should shut up. Lol.
If you were going to be (stereotypically) lost on a deserted
island, what three things would you most want with you?
My girlfriend! My laptop! Wifi! (We watch a lot of TV shows. I can't miss the next season of OITNB now can I!)
Whatâ€™s your worst nightmare?
Completely forgetting every joke. Farting on stage. Thankfully I've bypassed a real worst nightmare and I'm not going to get married off to a man!! It's great I feel like one of those cows on YouTube that got rescued from the slaughterhouse and started bouncing around the field. FREEDOM!
Best piece of advice you've ever been given?
Not related to comedy but "You are no fixed way of being." (Sounds a bit Confucious-y) - I learned it in a course I did. It's why I took up comedy and why I was able to let go of all the crap in my past. At any moment, you can reinvent yourself completely. I'm in total control of my circumstances and 100% responsible for my life. This is way too heavy for a comedy interview isn't it. DAMMIT
Whatâ€™s the best thing about being gay?
For me it's that I have a community of people I want to make a difference to. There are people who get kicked out of home, people who think there's something wrong with them - people are committing suicide, being bullied, getting hurt and people are confused and upset. The best thing about being gay and a comedian is that I'm in a unique position to hopefully set some kind of example, that things don't have to be so bad. I have no secrets and I don't have an agenda - except for people to be themselves and be happy. Being gay and able to laugh at myself is part of why people enjoy my comedy.
Also hello? Women.You can get tickets to Crouch's show Rule of 3 with Becky, Maarten & James here - it runs from 30 April- 3 May and tickets are only $12 -$18! Bargain!