Paul Tonkinson is rightly regarded as an absolute legend on the UK comedy circuit, and there are few more experienced pros. From performing on a wooden pallet for soldiers to filling a stadium of over 10,000 people, this guy knows how to make people laugh. He’ll be our first featured comedian of 2018, performing this February 9th & 10th, so check out his interview here at the ROR Comedy Club blog.
ROR: Hi Paul, thanks for taking the time to chat with us. What excites you most about coming to Japan?
Paul: My knowledge of Japan is largely based on the movie, “Lost In Translation”. Above and beyond that, I'm looking forward to a communal bath at an onsen and a visit to a zen temple in Kyoto, as well as of course, developing an on/off relationship with Scarlet Johansson and filming a whisky commercial.
ROR: Well, one, we hope you don’t have too many tattoos to keep you out of the onsens here in Japan, and two, we wish you and Scarlet all the best. Changing gears here, what’s the most unusual or exotic place you've performed?
Paul: I’ve been lucky enough to perform all over the world. I once did a gig on a pallet in a car park in Sierra Leone to 24 soldiers. I've also performed for over 16,000 people in a huge stadium arena in Johannesburg.
ROR: That’s quite the range! What part of your comedy career are you most proud of so far?
Paul: I've hosted a lot of shows on TV and radio but I reckon I'm most proud of the fact that after so many years as a comedian, I still love stand up comedy.
ROR: As you mentioned, you’ve played a lot of stadium gigs in the past. Do you get more nervous in front of a crowd of 10,000 or a more intimate audience of say, 100 people? What are some of the differences betweens stadium gigs and smaller club gigs?
Paul: The nerves are different with bigger rooms. In a 10,000 seater, if one in five people like you, that’s 2,000 people laughing, so it still sounds great, and you're having a good gig. With 100 people, if you take that same ratio of one in five, that’s like 20 people, and you're on your arse! Between the two audience sizes, it’s always the same experience really...you're in front of people making them laugh. With bigger gigs, you don't talk to the crowd as much and part of the reason is that the crowd can't see who you are talking to in that size of space. With smaller gigs, its more intimate, you can take your time more, and play… they tend to be more memorable.
ROR: What can people coming to your Osaka show expect?
Paul: People can expect a comedic performance of total hilarity, joy unbound, slapstick heaven, and improvisational wonderment!
ROR: Well, we look forward to your performance and it was great speaking with you. ROR regulars and visitors from around the world, make sure to mark your calendar and reserve your seats for one of Paul Tonkinson’s performances happening this February 9th &10th at Osaka’s (and Japan’s) only 100% dedicated stand up comedy venue. You’ll see our event announcement on our Facebook page, so make sure to reserve your seat now.