Looking for Laughs – The Interview Questions & Research

So far I have interviewed 5 people for my interview; Rick Molland, Iain Campbell, Kimi Laughton, Bob Graham & Andy Simms..

Equipment Checklist for Interviews:

  1. Make sure all equipment is present eg: handle, SD Card, wind breaker, USB Card, case & headphones
  2. Check there is memory space on the mic and sd card
  3. Check battery life
  4. Check for background noise and position yourself away from it
  5. Do a test recording with laughter, coughing and sudden loud noises in mind
  6. Check levels
  7. Check volume and gains
  8. Be aware of ambient sounds and adjust accordingly
  9. Prepare for potential wind noise
  10. Check distance of zoom from interviewee
  11. Minimize handling noise
  12. Watch for changing levels, changing environment and clothing/jeweller

 

The Interviews

Rick Molland

I interviewed Rick because he is one of the creators of the new comedy club in Edinburgh; The Monkey Barrel. He works there as the compare, books all the acts and is a comic himself. I figured he could give me a unique insider perspective on not just the Edinburgh comedy scene as a comic but as a promotor. He also was able to tell me a lot about the running and opening of a comedy club and struggles, worries and hopes everyone at the club has had.

Questions I asked Rick:

Could you tell us a bit about yourself? Where you’re from originally, your age etc

How long have you been involved in stand up for?

How did you get into it in the first place?

Who were your stand up inspirations?

How difficult did you find it to get into stand up and start booking gigs?

How difficult do you think it is for local Edinburgh comics to find gigs?

Is there still a good demand for local stand ups during the festival period?

Since you started doing stand up have you noticed any major differences in the Edinburgh Comedy scene? If so what are they?

How difficult do you think it is for people wanting to break into stand up just now in Edinburgh, for finding places to try it out or support from the community?

I know you are one of the creators of the new comedy club here in Edinburgh, the monkey barrel, could you tell us a bit about where the idea for the club came for and what inspired or encouraged you to go ahead with it?

Since its opening how successful do you think the monkey barrel has been so far?

What are your long term hopes for the monkey barrel?

How do you think the monkey barrel will compete with The Stand?

Do you think there is room in Edinburgh for more stand up nights and/or clubs?

If you could change anything about the Edinburgh comedy scene what would it be?

Are there any other major or minor changes you think should take place in the scene?

Where do you think the Edinburgh comedy scene is going to go? Do you think it will get bigger and flourish?

What do you hope for the comedy scene in Edinburgh and all its local comics?

 

Andy Simms

I interviewed Andy because he’s running a comedy course at the Monkey Barrel and I wanted to learn what he’d be offering in the course and how successful he thinks it will be.

Questions I asked Andy:

What sort of course are yo running at Monkey Barrel?

What main things are you going to cover?

Why do you think this sort of course is important?

Are there many other courses like this around Edinburgh?

How long would it take to complete the course?

 

Iain Campbell

I interviewed Iain Campbell because he is a local comic that used to run his own comedy night “The Line Up” here in Edinburgh. It was a new acts/new material night that was dear to bigger comedian stars and people just starting out alike. It was a unique place in that it was more catered to the acts and their learning experience than audience centred. There was a paying audience but they were much smaller than say the likes of the stand and therefore less intimidating. Unfortunately the night has been cancelled now but I wanted to ask Iain what he felt his night offered to the local comedy scene, how successful it was and if Edinburgh needs more nights like his.

Questions I asked Iain:

Could you tell us a bit about yourself? Where you’re from originally, your age etc

How long have you been doing stand up for?

How did you get into stand up in the first?

Who were your stand up inspirations?

How difficult did you find it to get into stand up and start booking gigs?

Have you mainly been doing stand up in Edinburgh?

Where else do you usually get booked?

Do you notice a difference between the demand for stand up comedy in Edinburgh between the month of August and the rest of the year?

Is there still a good demand for local stand ups during the festival period?

I know you used to run a new acts/new materials night, what inspired you to start that night?

Did you find The Line Up was popular? Did it help new comics find their footing in the Edinburgh comedy scene?

Do you think there is room for more nights like The Line Up in Edinburgh?

What do you think The Line Up offered as a new material/new acts night that the likes of The Stands RedRaw didn’t or couldn’t?

Since you started doing stand up have you noticed any major differences in the Edinburgh Comedy scene? If so what are they?

Where is your favourite place to perform your stand up and why?

How difficult do you think it is for people wanting to break into stand up just now in Edinburgh, for finding places to try it out or support from the community?

If you had to recommend a place for these people to try it out where would it be and what general advice would you give them?

If you were to start your comedy career again would you do anything differently? If so what?

How do you feel about the new comedy club in Edinburgh the Monkey Barrel?

How do you think the monkey barrel will compete with The Stand?

Do you think there is room in Edinburgh for more stand up nights and/or clubs?

If you could change anything about the Edinburgh comedy scene what would it be?

Are there any other major or minor changes you think should take place in the scene?

Where do you think the Edinburgh comedy scene is going to go? Do you think it will get bigger and flourish out with festival time?

What do you hope for the comedy scene in Edinburgh and all its local comics?

 

Kimi Laughton

I Interviewed Kimi because she is an up and coming comedian who is very active on the scene and I wanted to get a female perspective on what is mainly a male hobby or art. She was able to give me some insight into the differences and struggles that come with doing Stand Up as a woman and give some advice to any girls out there that are considering trying it.

Questions I asked Kimi:

Could you tell us a bit about yourself? Where you’re from originally, your age etc

How long have you been doing stand up for?

How did you get into stand up in the first place?

Who were your stand up inspirations?

How difficult did you find it to get into stand up and start booking gigs?

Have you mainly been doing stand up in Edinburgh?

Where else do you usually get booked?

Since you started doing stand up have you noticed any major differences in the Edinburgh Comedy scene? If so what are they?

Do you find you are treated any differently doing stand up as a girl?

Do you ever find it harder to get gigs because of your gender?

Is it harder to make large groups of men laugh, say for example stag dos, because you’re a girl or do you find it easier?

What advice would you give to any girls out there thinking about trying stand up but are nervous about actually going through with it?

How difficult do you think it is for people wanting to break into stand up just now in Edinburgh, for finding places to try it out or for support within the community?

If you had to recommend a place for these people to try it out where would it be and what general advice would you give them?

Would you like to see more women trying out stand up and performing?

What advice would you give to any woman who is considering try it but isn’t very sure how to go about it?

If you were to start your comedy career again would you do anything differently? If so what?

How do you feel about the new comedy club in Edinburgh the Monkey Barrel?

How do you think the monkey barrel will compete with The Stand?

Do you think there is room in Edinburgh for more stand up nights and/or clubs?

If you could change anything about the Edinburgh comedy scene what would it be?

Are there any other major or minor changes you think should take place in the scene?

Where do you think the Edinburgh comedy scene is going to go? Do you think it will get bigger and flourish out with festival time?

What do you hope for the comedy scene in Edinburgh and all its local comics?

 

Bob Graham

I interviewed Bob Graham because he’s been doing stand up in Edinburgh for just over ten years so was able to tell me a lot about how it’s changed since then. He also lived in Melbourne Australia for a year and did Stand up there too so he told me a bit about the differences in the scenes.

Questions for Bob:

Could you tell us a bit about yourself? Where you’re from originally, your age etc

How long have you been doing stand up for?

How did you get into stand up in the first?

Who were your stand up inspirations?

How difficult did you find it to get into stand up and start booking gigs?

Have you mainly been doing stand up in Edinburgh?

Where else do you usually get booked?

Since you started doing stand up have you noticed any major differences in the Edinburgh Comedy scene? If so what are they?

What differences are there between finding gigs when you first started out and finding them now?

Is there anything about the comedy scene back when you started that you miss from the scene now?

Is there anything you really don’t miss and you’re glad to see the back of?

Do you notice a difference between the demand for stand up comedy in Edinburgh between the month of August and the rest of the year?

Is there still a good demand for local stand ups during the festival period?

After the Festival period does it become more difficult to get gigs? If so do you think that’s because there is too much competition or from a lack of places offerings stand up comedy gigs? Or some combination of the two?

Where is your favourite place to perform your stand up and why?

How difficult do you think it is for people wanting to break into stand up just now in Edinburgh, for finding places to try it out or support from the community?

If you had to recommend a place for these people to try it out where would it be and what general advice would you give them?

If you were to start your comedy career again would you do anything differently? If so what?

How do you feel about the new comedy club in Edinburgh the Monkey Barrel?

How do you think the monkey barrel will compete with The Stand?

Do you think there is room in Edinburgh for more stand up nights and/or clubs?

If you could change anything about the Edinburgh comedy scene what would it be?

Are there any other major or minor changes you think should take place in the scene?

Where do you think the Edinburgh comedy scene is going to go? Do you think it will get bigger and flourish out with festival time?

What do you hope for the comedy scene in Edinburgh and all its local comics?

 

The Research

The research that has gone into all the people I’ve interviewed for my documentary was mainly through word of mouth, friends of friends and then bumping into them at comedy nights and events.

I’ve been going along to Monkey Barrel Comedy Club to see a lot of different acts and shows. I’ve mainly been attending their Wednesday show Japes, which is a new comedy and new acts night in their down stairs bars.
“Fancy yourself a comedy connoisseur? Come check out ‘Japes’ at the Monkey Barrel, Edinburgh’s alternative comedy club. Five of Scotland’s most promising new acts go head to head to see who will be crowned Top Banana! The night will be hosted by Rick Molland” – monkeybarrelcomedy.com

I also used to be a regular at the Line Up which I interviewed Iain Campbell about.

https://www.facebook.com/TheLineUpComedy

I went along to the Scottish Comedian of Year Awards also hosted at Monkey Barrel and the Yes Bar through in Glasgow.

https://www.yesbar.scot

I also started going to The Stands Monday night show RedRaw to see a lot of the acts I was interviewing sets and shows.

http://www.thestand.co.uk/redraw

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