It is festival season and that means that in the next month there is so many great comedy festivals to look forward to! This month we are looking at some of the great shows that you can see at the Camden Fringe. So take note because we are going to give you all the information you need for just a handful of some of the great shows happening this year!
Nicola Houghton: It’s All Gravy
Dates: Aug 11, 12,13
Ticket link: https://camdenfringe.com/show.php?acts_id=2589
Hello! Tell us about yourself?
I’m a stand up comedian, originally from Manchester, living in Tooting, London. I came to stand up in my late 30s, by which time I had 3 small children and wasn’t sure that I was ever going to do anything again that didn’t involve running around after them, feeding, cleaning, wiping noses, stopping them trying to damage themselves in some way – you get the idea. The internet talks about mums having ‘me time’ which usually involves a bath, gin and something to read, but it turns out that mine was stand up comedy.
How did you come up with the name of your show that your taking to the Camden fringe?
As a girl from Manchester, most meals came with gravy added – something I took for granted until moving away. I’ve lived in London for 13 years, but my home town, Radcliffe, often cropped up in my writing and so the phrase seemed apt. The phrase ‘It’s all gravy’ of course also means everything is good, and the show references making the best of what gets thrown at you and keeping going.
Tell us a little bit about your style of show?
I’m a storyteller with a lot of punchlines. I’ve put a lot of work into bringing my stories to life so they work for everyone, and that seems to have paid off. I just enjoy making people laugh and that’s the main focus of the show.
What will your set be about?
It’s a show about class. Growing up firmly entrenched in a working class family and town and now living a life that is very middle-class, this is something that often comes into my writing (almost as often as gravy). There’s a lot of comedy in the difference between my childhood and that of my children’s which, technology aside, is very much to do with growing up in a middle-class family and the huge differences that makes. Bringing up middle-class children has been an eye-opener. The show mentions the challenges that are in your way when you come from a small town with few job opportunities, where most people earn a lower income.
What other acts are you looking forward to seeing at the fringe?
Ooo, there’s so many great acts performing at Camden, as there is every year. I run a small monthly club in Tooting, Comedy at the Wheatsheaf, and we’ve been lucky enough to book some of this years acts for previous shows, and they’ve all been very entertaining: Faye Treacy, Paul Duncan McGarrity, Celia Delaney, Alex Martini, Fathia El-Ghorri, plus Dannie Grufferty and Sian Docksey. I’m also planning to catch Clarissa Maycock and Nathan Cassidy.
Have you done the fringe before? What have been some of your favourite shows to date and why?
This is my first Camden Fringe, so excited to finally be bringing a show here.
What have been some of the most unique and different shows you have seen this year and why?
There’s one I’m planning to see which I’m excited about as I can take my children to it and that’s ‘Samson and Mabel charge at you like an ox.’ I’m looking forward to seeing children do stand up, I’ve met them before and I think it’s going to be a fab show and my children will love it.
what advice would you give to others who want to perform at Camden Fringe next year?
If you are thinking about doing the fringe next year, go for it. It’s never too early to start getting your show into shape in preparation. This is a really friendly fringe run by a small but supportive, helpful, informative team.
What is the best thing about performing at the Camden fringe?
As a mum, I’m enjoying the fact that the Camden Fringe exists, so I can put on an hour show, but still get to spend the summer holidays with my children.
What are your three favourite things about Camden?
First, I love that anything goes – extremes and opposites exist side by side, secondly, the market – a dangerous place to be if you are hungry, there is so much food and it all looks and smells delicious and finally, the lock and the canal – a good place to wander and sit.
Favourite one liner you have done in a show and why?
“My friend recommended I buy a soup-maker, how is that not a pan.”
This one came out of a conversation about how we are constantly being told to spend money on things we don’t need – I like it because it makes people laugh for that reason.
Who would be your ultimate dream audience member?
Anyone that has come looking for some an hour of comedy really, but also clean enough for you to bring your teens, parents or grandparents and not have to avoid their gaze.
The iconic image of the Camden Fringe is the Pigeon – if you could call this years pigeon a name to represent its style what would it be and why?
I’d go for a respectable “Maud”, though she probably has a gothic alter ego when she steps away from the camera… it is Camden after all…
If people want to find out more about you where can they follow you on social media?
And Finally in three words – Why should people come and see the show?
It’s very funny – I promise!