Pierre Novellie already has a career that most comedians no doubt envy, having written and appeared on BBC Two’s The Mash Report and performed on shows including Stand Up Central, Joke Thieves, Outsiders, Edinburgh Comedy Fest Live, Taxi Gags and The Rest is History, while his writing credits include Mock the Week and Newzoids. Described as “Brutally funny ★★★★½” by Chortle’s Jay Richardson and “The dawn of a major talent” by James Kettle of The Guardian, he’s clearly a comedian you want to seek out as soon as you can. In this interview he talks about his new show, what he likes and dislikes about the Edinburgh festival, the funniest thing that’s happened to him since he started performing, and how he envies certain elements of the American comedy scene.
Comedy To Watch: How would you describe your comedy to someone who wasn’t previously aware of your good self?
Pierre: It’s observational comedy for people who think they don’t like observational comedy.
CTW: And what can you tell us about your Edinburgh show?
Pierre: It’s an hour of stand up comedy about all the most horrible things that absorb all of my attention and emotional energy
CTW: What are your favourite things about the festival?
Pierre: It’s a chance to see some of the best performers in the world in an intimate venue working their absolute hardest – and haggis.
CTW: And are there any aspects you don’t like?
Pierre: The relentless profiteering by some elements will turn the Festival to dust at some point.
CTW: When it comes to stand up, how do you feel you’ve evolved since your first ever gig?
Pierre: I now wear a red velvet jacket.
CTW: What’s the funniest thing that’s happened to you since you started performing?
Pierre: On New Year’s Eve 2017 my friend John slipped over while running into the kitchen to get more beer.
CTW: If you could change any element of the stand up scene, what would it be?
Pierre: I often envy how, in America, their biggest stand up stars will still perform at local or smaller comedy clubs, which ensures the continuation of the stand up circuit as a viable thing and ensures non-famous comedians will be able to earn money from those clubs and develop into the big stars of the future. Then again, I’ve heard it’s very annoying to lose your 1am performance slot because Dane Cook has showed up and is talking nonsense for at least an hour.
CTW: If money were no object, what would you like to create?
Pierre: My own muppets movie.
CTW: And finally, if you could interview yourself, what question would you most like to ask? And what would the answer be?
Pierre: “Would you like us to exclusively use our power to promote you and your show until it is sold out?” “Yes”