Interview: Lucy Frederick

lucy frederick interview
Lucy Frederick is a comedian, actor and writer based in South East London, who trained to be an actor at the prestigious East 15 Acting School, and since then she has worked in all sorts of other professions such as education, animal nutrition, fat modelling and backing dancing. But now she’s doing stand-up comedy. Which is nice. She is a regular on the comedy circuit having appeared at The Top Secret Comedy Club, The Stand and Just the Tonic amongst lots of others and is also becoming well known at the Edinburgh Fringe for her “eye wateringly honest” shows about the human condition. Lucy is an Edinburgh Fringe veteran: this will be her 6th year at the Festival, having had acclaimed runs with Even More Naked in 2018, Positively Livid in 2016 and others. Here she talks about her new show Famtastic, how she’s found her voice over the years of doing Edinburgh, how she’d like to write a book and appear on Horrible Histories, and how she’d like to work with either Amy Schumer, Trevor Noah, Hannah Gadsby or Richard Gadd.

Comedy To Watch: How would you describe your comedy to someone who wasn’t previously aware of your good self?

Lucy: I’d say it was largely story telling stand up. A reviewer once described me as ‘eye-wateringly honest’ which I love. I tend to talk about big emotions through the filter of fairly normal everyday struggles.

CTW: And what can you tell us about your Edinburgh show?

Lucy: I am so proud of my show this year! It’s about being a step-parent and a part of a blended family with all the pitfalls and steep learning curves that come with that!

CTW: What are your favourite things about the festival?

Lucy: Seeing my friends. The city – Edinburgh is beautiful. Performing a show I love everyday for a month!

CTW: And are there any aspects you don’t like?

Lucy: Like most performers I hate flyering. I have a bit of a tendency to lose my voice and I find that flyering is the worst for that! You adopt this weird high pitched tone of desperation that tears into your vocal chords – and your soul! I find the best way to get around that is to remind myself that I wrote a show that means a lot to me and it’s nice to chat about it to other people. It’s not flyering, It’s chatting.

Oh and Cowgate on a Saturday night, *shudder*.

CTW: When it comes to stand up, how do you feel you’ve evolved since your first ever gig?

Lucy: I think I’ve evolved really slowly! It took me three Edinburgh shows to work out what kind of comedian I wanted to be. I used to try to be really likable and friendly but I ended up being totally forgettable. In 2016 I took the plunge and wrote a way more personal piece that was really raw and honest. And that’s what I do now. This show isn’t as gut-punching as the last one I don’t think but (I hope!) it’s more funny.

CTW: What’s the funniest thing that’s happened to you since you started performing?

Lucy: I don’t know that anything overly amusing has happened as a direct result of being a performer – mostly my friends and family are the providers of the ridiculous in my life!

CTW: If you could change any element of the stand up scene, what would it be?

Lucy: I wish it didn’t feel like you have to be on TV to get an audience for live stuff. It really feels as though audiences will only turn over their hard earned dollar for someone who they recognise. I don’t know, it’s hard to criticize the industry without seeming a bit bitter, isn’t it?

CTW: Apart from what you’ve already done, is there anything else you’d like to do in the comedy world?

Lucy: I really want to write a book. I think this show is interesting and funny – more and more people are now a part of a blended family. So I’d like to write a book on it.

And Horrible Histories! My step-daughter is a massive fan so I’d love to be in that if only for the brownie points!

CTW: And if money were no object, and you could collaborate with any living comedian, what would you like to create?

Lucy: I’d love to work with Amy Schumer or Trevor Noah or Hannah Gadsby! I also really love Richard Gadd’s work – and he’s a fabulous actor. No idea what we’d create but it would be amazing!

CTW: Finally, if you could interview yourself, what question would you most like to ask? And what would the answer be?

Lucy: This year’s show is partly about confidence – something I’ve lacked all my life. I’d ask myself why I find it so hard to be confident in my ability to sell seats. I’d ask this because I’d really like to know the answer!

Alex Finch. Photograph (c) Steve Ullathorne.
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Related Links:
You can find out more information and buy tickets for Lucy’s Edinburgh show here.
Lucy’s Official Site.
You can follow Lucy on twitter here.

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