John Hastings: An Edinburgh Fringe 2014 Interview

19 Jul

Words by Susan Fordjohn hastings

John Hastings performed at the third Punchline Gala with Pappy’s, David Trent and Charlie Baker: since then we’ve made sure to keep our eyes on him.  As the festival draws even closer, I was lucky to catch up with John to discuss both shows he is performing this year.

Hello John Hastings how are you?
I am super duper. I am sitting in my friend Paul’s flat eating rice and excited to chat with you cool cats.

Firstly, I just want to say that we love you: what are your emotions about Punchline?
Satisfaction because I know they go at the end of jokes. The company (you guys) I feel grateful because you are super excellent bookers who helped me play a big fuck off theatre one time.

This is not your first time at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, are you excited about coming back?
Yes always. It’s like sitting exams for your dream job in a rainy city by a volcano. Also they have a lot of crepes AND all of your friends from all across the world are there to hang out and talk shop with. (by shop I mean talk about actual shops where the counter is situated etc.)

You are not just doing an hour of stand up; I believe you have a podcast show as well? Without giving too much away, can you tell us more about both your shows?
The first show is an hour of story telly stand up I wrote/lived about being in the UK the first 6 months. While the podcast is an improvised hour of stand up comedy/BS and anyone can help out by just sending anything at all to johnhastingspodcast@gmail.com

Will you be involved with any other shows as well?
I will be jumping up at all the usual package shows your Late ‘n’ Lives etc. I love the package shows up there because you can kind of play around and the pressure is off you, kinda just doing the job and are not tethered to just your specific set of material. AND I get a thrill out off looking back on each day and saying I talked about my farts in 11 different basements. AWESOME.

Last year you performed as part of the famous Comedy Reserve, how do you feel about going it along this year?
Nervous. It’s all on my broad but shockingly weak shoulders. I get to pick the intro music though so strap in for mostly Journey, people of the fringe.

How does a solo show compare to teaming up with other comedians?
It’s different because you gotta get yourself on/manage the room/close. It used to scare me but now I get the energy flow. People will be a little tight at the beginning and loosening throughout.

How have you been preparing for the Festival this year; have you been doing many previews and have they been going well?
I think it is in the mid to late twenties. Each one is bizarre because you are tweaking. Preparing for this festival is like betting on a unicorn race – nobody knows the rules.

What are the best bits about performing at the Edinburgh Fringe?
The energy of that town heaving with clowns and stories. Just walking down Cowgate seeing 10,000 people you know or want to know.

What have been your biggest highlights from the Festival and what do you hope will be your new highlights from 2014?
Biggest highlight was Late N Live last year when I got the whole crowd to help eject a heckler through the chanting of the classic C-Bomb and my grandparents sending the town Undertaker to the Comedy Reserve last year and he said in the show “oh boy did I need a laugh”

What other shows do you recommend this year?
Go see Brendon Burns’ show, This Is Your Trial and this scamp John Hastings doing two different shows in two different rooms. That guy is alright even though is head is dumbly large.

John Hastings’ solo show ‘Adventure‘ is on at 9.45pm at the Pleasance Courtyard, and his improvised podcast show ‘Anything Can Be a Podcast! Podcast!‘ is on at 5.15pm at the Laughing Horse @ The Free Sisters.

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