Artesian on 13th
Friday 28 and Saturday 29
As a standup comedian, Graham Clark’s faced all kinds of audiences. But take a good Canadian boy like him, born and raised in Calgary but now finding his home in Vancouver, and drop him in front of drunk Brits and he could run into some problems. Specifically, deciphering a heavy accent.
Last year, he encountered just such a heckler while hosting a show in London.
“It was like we were from different planets,” he says.
As far as he knows, that situation turned out OK.
“At the end of it, he offered to buy me a drink at the bar, so I guess we had a good time? I have no way to prove it. I actually have been watching movies from different parts of the U.K. to try and get my ears a bit more ready. So hopefully that works?”
It needs to work because Clark’s going to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, a massive arts festival featuring over 2,500 acts. It’s part of a summer of travel for Clark, which include going home to perform in Calgary before coming to Artesian on 13th in Regina.
The Regina sets, in addition to watching Fish Tank and The Inbetweeners to get a feel for accents, are part of his training regiment for his overseas trip.
“I’m trying to put together a best-of, just trying to come out with all the best material that’s worked for me over the last couple of years and then also see if there are any natural links between all that material. I mean, beyond that they were all written by me.”
He isn’t slowing down during the summer months. He’s performing standup more and more often and continues to cohost the popular podcast Stop Podcasting Yourself. In addition to all that, he’s also hosting a regular live show based on another great summer activity: watching wrestling.
Ring-a-Ding-Dong-Dandy features Clark, the Sunday Service’s Ryan Beil and a guest riffing on wrestling videos curated by Clark. He says the curating process always takes much, much longer than it needs to.
“I think the last show, I could’ve got all the clips I needed and been done with it hours and hours before I stopped watching clips. I could just really do it all day. It’s really one of the most fun things to watch. I thought I grew out of it. It turns out that’s not true at all. I still think it’s super fun to watch. And it’s funny, you know? These wrestlers are genuinely funny characters. They know comic timing. Is there anything else even remotely like it? I don’t think so.”
That’s a lot of indoor activities for the warmer months. That’s mostly how he likes it.
“I’m a guy who’s always warm, so when summer hits, it’s too much. Too much warm. My summer time activities are really shade based. I love a good shade. Shade and last year, I had a friend who had a hammock. Sleeping in that in the shade was pretty fantastic. I’m kinda a lazy summer guy. Lots of sitting around, drinking lemonades and hiding in the shade.”
If you’ve ever seen the man, you could probably guess correctly that his beard wouldn’t help him out at this time of the year.
“Oh mama. It is like carrying a carpet around your head. It is a crazy insulator. It holds in the heat. But apparently, I read a study that said people with beards, their facial hair works as sunblock. So at least the bottom half of my face is good to U.V. ray wise. I save on sunscreen, I guess is what I’m saying.”
“Are you applying sunscreen to the rest of your face?” I ask.
“Oh absolutely. I have a really big forehead. I guess it works out even. I guess whatever money I spend on lower half of the face I spending on the upper half of the face. Maybe I’m just even Steven when it comes to that.”