We like to have a laugh and luckily for us, so does our LDNER. This week we have stand-up comedian, writer and actor Ed Gamble. A Londoner born and bred, we talk to him about his creative influences, his upcoming performance at the Leicester Square Theatre and ad-libbing in daily life…
Where do you live in London and what do you love about that area?
I live in SW London and I love it. I have lived here all my life in some capacity – I grew up in Wandsworth, went to school in Wimbledon, lived in Raynes Park and now I’m only 15 minutes from there! Who knows, I may be experiencing Stockholm Syndrome. If I was to ever experience living in Shoreditch, I would realise I am a prisoner of mums in gym gear, organic juice bars and tired looking au pairs hauling around children who are clearly destined for careers in brokering.
How did you first get into comedy, where does the influence come from?
My mum took me to see Steve Coogan live when I was 13 and I distinctly remember being bowled over by that. When I got to university there was a sketch group that I auditioned for and I haven’t stopped doing it since. Nobody in my family has shown any signs of ever being deliberately funny, so I don’t think I’ve got it from them.
Does London inspire your comedy, where do you go to catch a few laughs or get material?
As I’ve lived here my whole life, I couldn’t tell you if there is anything specific about London that inspires what I do. There are so many different types of people here, all trying to get along, which helps I guess. Just seeing the way people interact with each other and negotiate every day life is very rich. Also, every so often people fall over on the tube so I can just describe that.
You are performing at the Leicester Square Theatre soon, what are you going to open with?
I never really know what I’m going to open with! I try and be as close to myself onstage as possible so whenever I’ve planned exactly what I’m going to start by saying it always comes across as a little disingenuous. I don’t know if I’ve used that word right, but let’s just say I have. See, I haven’t even planned what I am going to write for this answer. I think we can agree, much funnier. I’m really excited to bring my tour to the Leicester Square Theatre – I’ve performed in their smaller space plenty of times, but this will be the first time for me doing stand up in the main house. It’s a beautiful room and feels like it will be a memorable one for me – not least because it is the last show of the tour, on home ground, hopefully in front of lots of people who I went to school with all looking at me in wonderment.
Finally, what would be your perfect day in London?
Meals: Breakfast at Hawksmoor, Lunch at Spuntino followed by pudding at Gelupo, Dinner at Clove Club. (I forgot to mention, in this perfect day I never get full.) Somewhere in between those meals I will go and see a film at the Electric Cinema in Portobello, a trip to the Science Museum and at least six escape rooms. Oh boy, I love escape rooms. If I ever quit comedy, I will definitely work in an escape room. They are themed rooms where you have to solve puzzles to get out within an hour. I recommend Enigma Quest, Time Run or Omescape. I would do those in my perfect day but I have already done them which spoils the mystery somewhat. To end my perfect day, I go to bed at 9.30pm.
Ed will be performing at the Leicester Square Theatre on the 25th November 2016