The Gareth Cooper Three Minute Interview

The former member of the Delete the Banjax sketch group, Gareth Cooper, returns to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe to share an hour of stand-up comedy with Dan Cook. Martin Walker talks to Gareth by email about what audiences should expect.

I think if you can find something you enjoy, do that, and try not to worry about things like career and money and affording to eat.

“It's a split hour between an idiot - Dan - and a dork - me. Dan will be attempting a sketch show of sorts and I'll be doing a combination of stand-up, songs and poems which will result in who-knows-what. We've not actually seen much of each other's solo material so this will be an experience for us as well as the audience.”

Why did you choose to perform as part of Freestival?

“We both started out doing sketch comedy on the Free Fringe, in sketch group Delete the Banjax, so it felt pretty natural to bring our solo stuff to Freestival. You just don't get this kind of value anywhere else at the fringe, for both performers and punters. And Freestival have been so amazingly organised and helpful - it's actually been very non-stressful preparing for Edinburgh this year.”

For you, is Stand-Up Comedy a career choice or a calling?

“God, I wouldn't say it's a calling - just something I really enjoy doing! I think if you can find something you enjoy, do that, and try not to worry about things like career and money and affording to eat."

Have you ever gone too far? What happened?

“I don't think so - I don't write particularly controversial material! It's more just stupid stuff that makes people laugh. I managed to split a room pretty much right down the middle with a heckler come-back, once, but the half that liked it were so on-board after that, so the gig actually got much more enjoyable.”

If you were curating a stand up show for television, who would be your guests?

“Just loads of great acts on the circuit at the moment - Nick Helm, That Pair, Lazy Susan, Birthday Girls, Holly Burn... loads more! Come see the show and I'll give you some recommendations!”

Broadway Baby Listing and Edinburgh Fringe Box Office:

Twitter: @garethcooper82

YouTube Clip:

Since you’re here…

… we have a small favour to ask. We don't want your money to support a hack's bar bill at Abattoir, but if you have a pound or two spare, we really encourage you to support a good cause. If this article has either helped you discover a gem or avoid a turkey, consider doing some good that will really make a difference.

You can donate to the charity of your choice, but if you're looking for inspiration, there are three charities we really like.

Mama Biashara
Kate Copstick’s charity, Mama Biashara, works with the poorest and most marginalised people in Kenya. They give grants to set up small, sustainable businesses that bring financial independence and security. That five quid you spend on a large glass of House White? They can save someone’s life with that. And the money for a pair of Air Jordans? Will take four women and their fifteen children away from a man who is raping them and into a new life with a moneymaking business for Mum and happiness for the kids.
Donate to Mama Biashara now

Theatre MAD
The Make A Difference Trust fights HIV & AIDS one stage at a time. Their UK and International grant-making strategy is based on five criteria that raise awareness, educate, and provide care and support for the most vulnerable in society. A host of fundraising events, including Bucket Collections, Late Night Cabarets, West End Eurovision, West End Bares and A West End Christmas continue to raise funds for projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Donate to Theatre MAD now

Acting For Others
Acting for Others provides financial and emotional support to all theatre workers in times of need through the 14 member charities. During the COVID-19 crisis Acting for Others have raised over £600,000 to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
Donate to Acting For Others now