Comedy | Matt Price

A Gozitan taxi driver told him comedy is just ‘the kind of thing people do here’. Now, with some years of standup under his belt, British comedian Matt Price returns to our shores to perform at The Eden's Comedy Club on February 10.

Standup comedian Matt Price will be performing at Eden Cinemas on February 10.
Standup comedian Matt Price will be performing at Eden Cinemas on February 10.

Is comedy a full-time job like any other?

Is it a full time job, but the difference between any jobs I've done previously, is that I don't hate going to work. Every night is different because audiences differ so much, which keeps me interested and my material fresh. There is a lot of travelling involved and a lot preparation too. The actual gig is only a small part of a working day. But it's the best part.

How do you go about adapting life into comedy?

Real life events are often funnier than anything I could ever make up. I enjoy people-watching and I love to tell stories about the people I've met and the experiences I've had. In practical terms, I make a note of anything that might be funny and allow it evolve over a period of time. Sometimes the comedy writes itself because events naturally unfold. Sometimes it can require a lot of thought to make it funny. I tend to go to low key venues with new material, to find out if a story is going to work or not.

Do you tailor your act to the particular audience you're performing for, and how do you gauge what kind of vibe a 'room' would have on any given night?

After a while most comics can listen to the level of chatter in a room and tell what the audience is going to be like. Sometimes we get it wrong of course, but it's all part of it. I tend to look at where people are sitting and look at how they are communicating with each other. I also listen out to snippets of conversation. I look at the demographic of the room and will deliver the material in a different way depending on how rowdy the room is. It means that no two performances are ever the same.

Do you enjoy improv, or does it frighten you?

I like it when an audience are funny. Contributions can really make a night. Relentless heckling is annoying and unnecessary. It can make the rest of the audience angry but fortunately audiences are often self-regulating. I like to improvise if the opportunity arises, I'm big enough to admit when someone in the audience has said something really funny and although I like to tell my stories, I keep an open mind as to how the evening might pan out.

What's your favourite part of performing in front of a live audience?

I like when the audience are up for it. It is a two way process and it's great when people want to be entertained and have a good time. It's their night after all and although it's a cliché, the more they give the comic, the more they get back. I like it when it goes well for everyone and the audience and the acts leave happy. It makes what we do worthwhile.

Are you looking forward to performing in Malta?

I went on holiday to Gozo 10 years ago and went on a tour of the island with a taxi driver. I worked in IT at the time and he asked me what I did and I told him that I wanted to be a professional comedian one day. He told me that he didn't know what that meant. I tried for at least five minutes to explain and he told me it sounded like the sort of the thing that people might do in Malta. All these years later, I'm hoping that he's right and that we have a great night.

Tickets at €20 can be booked online: http://www.edencinemas.com.mt/Event/1530/. The show starts at 20:00. 

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