MICF Focus: Michelle Brasier

21 March 2016 | 1:39 pm | Artist Submission

"In 1968 the Soviet Union sent the first tortoise into deep space. That tortoise was my dad. I work in retail but am planning a trip to space to find him and show him how tall I've gotten."

Name Michelle Brasier 

Tell us a knock-knock joke. Knock knock. Who's there? Europe. Europe who? No, you're the one who is a poo. Sorry.

Briefly describe your show. In 1968 the Soviet Union sent the first tortoise into deep space. That tortoise was my dad. I work in retail but am planning a trip to space to find him and show him how tall I've gotten. Also I sing a lot and do the splits twice.

What was the inspiration behind your show? I was working in retail a few years back and I had this idea for a children's book called retail tortoise. My father and my brother passed away quite quickly and I combined the things that were in my mind! Family, and a tortoise desperate to be an astronaut…

Don't miss a beat with our FREE daily newsletter

Besides making people laugh, what else do you hope people get from your show? I wrote this show wanting it to make people feel warm. That's the end goal. I want people to leave singing and feeling better than they did before.

What was the biggest challenge you encountered while writing your show? I think deciding on songs was the hardest part. I wanted all originals and then I thought, 'Oh, but people love songs they know so much,' so it flipped a few times but in the end it's become this kind of '90s-music singalong, which I love.

Describe your perfect audience. A room full of Doughnut Time doughnuts and my pug, Miley Cyrus. And maybe a laugh track.

What happened the last time you were heckled? I kissed that person on their heckler lips and they picked their game up and joined the fun. Kissing solves everything.

What's your pre-show ritual? How do you unwind after a show? I dance to S Club 7 and have a cheeky whiskey pre-show. I unwind at the bar with mates. Sometimes the bar also plays S Club 7.

What makes a good comedy hour? And what makes an abysmal one? I think so long as everyone is flexible and open then you'll have a good show. The audience and the artist need to be open and ready for anything. It's a negotiation. Also maybe a few drinks in is good, but super-drunk audiences are hard to wrangle so maybe being a good drunk-person wrangler improves your shows too.

Is there anything that comics shouldn't joke about? No, I don't think so. There are certain things I've been a victim of that we are all so wary of talking about, and I find it important for me to be able to laugh about those things. It's not funny to make fun of victims, you know, always punch up, but I don't think any topic should be off limits. If it's clever, you will empower people. Not talking about something only adds to the shame of it sometimes. I think punch up and make it clever and it's okay to joke about anything.

When did you realise you had to become a comedian? I was studying Music Theatre at VCA and realised I enjoyed the comedic roles the most.

What would you be doing if you weren't a comedian? I wanted to be J Lo when I was growing up, so I guess I'd be J Lo.

What's a ridiculous situation you've been in that you got a joke from? We picked some of dad's favourite songs to be played as we exited the church at his funeral, but we messed up somehow and the songs ended up being played as his coffin was lowered into the ground. The first song was Ring Of Fire by Johnny Cash.

What do you love about Comedy Festival season? I love seeing all my friends presenting new work and I love the espresso martinis. Also Spandex Ballet at Max Watt's.

What was the last thing that had you in side-splitting laughter? I was in Aunty Donna's 1999 and shooting that was just five days of crying with laughter. Working with mates is the worst; I don't get anything done I just cry with laughter.

What other comedians are you excited to check out at the Festival? Anne Edmonds, Aunty Donna, Demi Lardner, Tessa Waters, Lessons With Louis, No Show (I think that's going to be brilliant), Neal Portenza, Stu Daulman, Penny Greenhalgh.

Website link for more info? http://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2016/season/shows/space-tortoise-michelle-brasier