Adrienne Truscott is bold; her comedy is exciting, fresh and uncompromising. Truscott is a prime example of a comedian who takes the art form by the throat, reshaping it in her own unique way to enable serious topics to become accessible and taboo subjects to become public domain. Her latest show Adrienne Truscott’s A One-Trick Pony! (which she’ll be performing at the Edinburgh Festival) is set to be high-octane, political and absurd, so surely it’s an occasion not to be missed.
To learn more about the woman behind the show, I asked Adrienne these seven questions…
1) What is the most important aspect of comedy?
Brains, timing, vulnerability and an absence of dignity. By all accounts, a fucked up childhood doesn’t hurt. Um, that’s five aspects. Apparently being good at ‘maths’ isn’t a comedic requirement.
2) Do you tend to get upset if you hurt someone’s feelings?
Yes I do. And I can lean towards an acerbic sense of humour, so sometimes I think things come out of my mouth faster than I mean for them to. I think usually however, my sense of humour is, at least, triggered by or at the expense of the powerful – which makes the target somewhat susceptible. as opposed to the powerless, as well as by hypocrisy – including my own. I’ve been the target of my own jokes a few times and really hurt my own feelings.
3) What is your favourite tourist attraction?
Any waterfall or cave anywhere in the world. I love those things and ideally those two things together. That said, as an American, a castle sort of does my head in. The USA post-revolution is so young, our sense of history can be pretty brief and self-serving over there – we don’t have castles, only mansions. The Edinburgh Castle is truly one of the most mind-blowing castles of all time. And I swear on a beheaded queen I’m not just saying that because it’s Ed Fringe. Over in the US, we conveniently exclude ourselves from the notion of more barbaric times, dungeons, plagues, etc. and even though it could be wrongly romanticized, an actual castle inspires a pretty boundless sense of adventure and imagination for this gal. In that way, the midnight tours of the underground city with some bourbon is sort of an amazing combination of castle and cave.
4) What is the worst thing anyone could say to you right now?
‘Did you vote for President Trump?! High Five.’ Both Trump and high fives make me uncomfortable in equal measure.
5) Are you a secretive person?
Oh God no. I spill the beans about myself too easily I think. Too many good stories. But I’m good with other peoples’ secrets. I have one person’s secret that I’ve still never told – even though revealing it would have dug me out of a deep hole and served as my defence in a delicate matter. But it didn’t seem like my secret to tell, even though I took a bit of a hit for something that wasn’t really my fault. Alas, it was worth it. But some secrets are good to tell and it depends on who is the keeper of the secrets. For instance, I think it’s great for artists to talk to one another about their deals, etc. and not keep them secret. I don’t think, in that instance, secrets do the right people the right service.
6) Do you enjoy competition in your profession?
I think I can be pretty competitive. I was a jock for a lot of my life. But I think I’m mostly competitive if there is a ball involved. Not a ball like a fancy dance, and not a testicle – when those are involved I say everyone have at it! I mean just a round ball, that’s in play. I’ll wanna get it.
7) What core message does your latest show convey?
Hmmm, that definitions and categories about comedy and types are irrelevant… which might not be as fun as these other messages: that irony is ironic, that pancakes are delicious, vaginas are hilarious, hookers are nice and I’m the toughest wrestler in town. Or that the late, great, legendary Andy Kaufman was a feminist performance artist. Or, that the best comedians steal. Take your pick.