Noel Fielding has recently embarked on his first live tour since the second Mighty Boosh tour over five years ago, and this time he’s got a whole new agenda. Noel is my comedy hero, and I was honoured to be invited to talk to him about his tour, An Evening With Noel Fielding.
How’s the tour going so far?
It’s going well. Well, it’s alright. It started off well and then I got a bug so I was really sick… but you can’t really stop, that’s the problem. You’ve got to keep going; got to keep doing the gigs! The tour won’t stop so you just have to sort of get on with it.
But it’s going well. The best one, so far, was Halifax.
You’ve added more dates recently as well.
Yeah, tonnes more, I think there may be another thirty or forty, and then twenty after Christmas. I think we’re going to Australia and maybe America, even some parts of Europe or New Zealand, we don’t know yet.
I’d love to do something in America at some point; something completely different. But this is going to be quite a big tour. We’re only at the beginning of it really.
Artistically speaking, what were your aims for this tour?
Well, I wanted to try and make something good, and have it be interactive and have animation so I could make a show that showed all aspects of what I do. But something you’d still be able to enjoy without you having to have seen the Boosh or Luxury Comedy or my stand-up.
I wanted it to be funny for people that hadn’t seen me before and have some audience interaction as well as stand-up, some music and a narrative. We’ve been working on it religiously all year. My brother’s in it, Mike, from The Mighty Boosh and Tom Meeten, who’s a really great comedian.
What kind of ages have your audience members been this time?
I think it was pretty broad even with the Boosh. There were lots of young screaming teenagers but that’s okay, and there were lots of older people in the audience as well. This tour has been quite mixed. There’s a bit where I go into the crowd as a character called New York Cop and I have to interrogate the audience and I chat to them. It’s much more mixed than I thought it would be, which really pleases me.
How have you found the process of writing for a tour compared to writing for television?
It’s a different thing really to writing a TV show; I wrote TV shows back to back so I was getting stir crazy.
I like working with an audience and I love the energy of live gigs so when you’re making TV shows, you don’t really get much feedback other than on the Internet and a few reviews. It’s a bit like working in the dark or in a tunnel so when you come out and do live stuff it’s great to get a reaction straight away.
I had a lot of ideas for the tour show already because I hadn’t toured for a while and I just sort of brought them all together to make one show and made sure it wasn’t too lumpy or too much like a collage of different ideas. I wanted to try and make it flow.
Are there any comedians that you’d like to work with in the future?
I love Tony Law, Paul Foot and James Acaster. Being on Buzzcocks means you get to work with them, but, yeah, I’d love to do stuff with Paul Foot. He’s brilliant and so underrated. He should be a household name.
Russell Brand’s just written a book and I’d quite like to do something with him as well; an improvised show, something unplanned. I like working with Russell. He’s very brave.
What else would you like to do?
I’ve fallen in love with stand-up again whilst doing this tour. There’s about forty minutes of stand-up in the show, and I was very scared because I hadn’t done stand-up for a while, but I managed to do it and I was really enjoying it much more than I thought I would be.
I would like to do a pure stand-up show now as well. And with the Loose Tapestries, Serge and I are always talking about going on tour so that would be fun. I’d like to write children’s books too, so maybe I could do that. I want to do everything!
COME BACK NEXT WEEK TO READ PART TWO OF MY INTERVIEW WITH NOEL, FOR EXCLUSIVE INSIGHT INTO THE WRITING AND RECEPTION OF LUXURY COMEDY SERIES TWO.