CB: What is your show about?
MM: This year’s show is about growing up in different parts of the world and how much my parents affected who I became.
I lived in Hong Kong until I was 14, with a (very) British father and a (very) Kenyan mother. So I never really felt I was ‘from’ anywhere. Whatever that means. I then lived for a bit in New Zealand, and now over here in London; lots of different routes, but no real…roots. See? Roots…Routes…ah never mind.
People seem to be very curious about National Identity, especially now in this climate, and as someone who really did grow up without any sense of one, it’s peculiar to be around that.
My Mum is a big part of the show as well; how she’s affected my life and my relationships with others. I’m not ready for her to see it yet…one of the benefits of her living on the other side of the world. I’m still terrified of her.
CB: Why did you want to write this show?
MM: I wanted to push myself, I like learning how to do things differently. I’m trying to share a bit more of who I am on stage, and there was no avoiding it with this show!
It’ll be my first hour, and I’m really looking forward to actually performing it every night – I’ve already learned so much, and can’t wait to see it evolve and develop when I’m up there.
CB: What comedians and comedy writers have impacted the way you develop your show structures and material?
MM: Seinfeld’s joke structure is just unparalleled – he was the first comedian I listened to, and thought ‘So you talk, people listen and they laugh? How can I get in on this?’ I can probably recite “I’m telling you for the last time” word for word.
I recently saw Ali Wong’s special on Netflix, and can’t recommend that enough. She has this amazing ability to structure a story; it’s really tightly woven and engaging. Joel Dommett is someone on the London circuit who I feel does something similar – I love a good callback. Man, that’s like my comedy crack.
CB: What is your advice for new comedians and writers who want to write their first show?
MM: Write, work and rehearse. Your show is always evolving and the better you know it, the easier it is to change something you feel might not be working. Also start your previews EARLY. Like, the second you decide to do a show. Even if thats the year before.
But most importantly, have fun with it – the more fun you’re having on stage, the funnier you’ll be, no matter how clever the structure is.
Masud Milas will perform his new show Routes at the Edinburgh Festival. Tickets