The Man With the Agenda

24 April 2012 | 4:44 pm | Stuart Evans

"There’s not much room for fucking up and I like to live in the moment," says Stephen K Amos.

Laughter has always been part of Englishman Stephen K Amos' agenda, so what's changed that Amos has had to stipulate it as the name of his show? “I really have to rubber-stamp that laughter is actually my agenda,” he says. “There are so many political agendas and leadership battles going on that when people come to see me they need to know that my own agenda is for them to laugh. I am a bit like a politician as I stand in front of people telling lies.”

Amos is a real character, a regular on the comedy circuit and known to give a comedic slap to Aussies. It's all in good jest, of course: “Whatever I say there is always a sense of truth in it but it is said in good humour. My critics are the number of people who come to my shows.” Amos recently appeared on Channel 10's The Circle and was amused by the infomercials. “You can't take these things too seriously when these random infomercials keep coming up, so I said that. I'm not censored and like to keep it real.” 

His MICF show, Laughter Is My Agenda, has been around five months in the making and delves into what makes and forms an agenda for people. “The show is semi-autobiographical and is a bit of a gag-a-thon,” he explains. “It has more observations as it's an entirely new show.”

Amos appeared in the winning team at MICF's Great Debate in 2006, 2007, and 2008. He's also appeared at the traditional Gala event and reveals he still gets nervous. “It's a different type of nervous and is probably more nervous energy as you have to prepare a four-minute set and give the organisers the start, middle and end of the routine. There's not much room for fucking up and I like to live in the moment.”

Given the uncertainty of the global economy, employment and everything else that makes headlines, Amos believes comedy is having a resurgence – laugher really is the best form of medicine. “In the UK, comedy is booming. There are more comedy programmes and lots of avenues for comics to be seen and get stuff out there. I think comedy is providing relief to what is happening and I think people are asking if they had $20 then what better way to spend that money than by watching people who can make you laugh and enjoy yourself.”