The Stand, Glasgow, Mon 12 Jan; The Stand, Edinburgh, Tue 13 Jan
MY COMEDY HERO
I saw Billy Connolly live in Manchester when I was eight, though I’m not sure how I got in. My dad had two tickets but my mum said ‘oh I don’t fancy it’ and he didn’t have anyone else to go with, so I said ‘I’ll go’ and got sneaked in. I did sit there and laugh but I was more transfixed by this alpha male on stage just talking. He sounded and looked so funny that as soon as it was done, that was all I wanted to be. I wanted to be him and I’ve watched every single thing he’s done and always found him brilliant. Even recently when he’s had a bit of stick, I still stand by him because when he was at his best, he was the best.
There are people who’ve only seen one comedy show in their life and it’s probably Billy Connolly. Peter Kay has that in the north west where suddenly loads of people who’ve never been to a theatre are going to see him; every so often it takes someone like that to excite people. Also for Connolly, to be up there at that time and not doing mother-in-law gags in a world of mother-in-law gags was brave. In America they’d been doing it for 20 years but in this country it was new and special.