Today I speak to Brossie (Siobhan Brosnan) we talk about her love for dark comedy and how it’s often a coping mechanism for finding humour in tragedy, we share some strange animal dissection stories, gigging in your hometown for the first time and the best Stephen Hawking joke you’ll ever here.
Hello and welcome to The Comedy Cast. We’re back with our first interview of 2019 and we have a Kerry comedian who we think will be making waves on the Irish comedy circuit for many years to come. Brossie, or Siobhan Brosnan, lives in Galway and when she’s making her pupils laugh in her day job she’s gigging all over the country making us laugh.
We kick off the interview by me slagging off Brossie’s name, not exactly classy but it was close to Christmas and we were all giddy with excitement that Santa was coming soon. We’ve decided too that Brossie needs to change her family’s religion to fit my joke, which was nice of her.
On my recent trip to Ireland Brossie was one of the acts performing at the Blasket in Tralee, one joke that had me in tears was a really, really raw joke about Stephen Hawking. This leads us down a conversation about Brossies love for dark comey and the juxtaposition of while most people who see her as sweet and innocent, really there’s a steely meanness and darkness to her comedy, which works perfectly. She reveals something interesting too, a few family members work in the health sector and says that the majority of them share a dark, or gallows, sense of humour. This gets us to talking about that, it doesn’t take long for a conversation with doctors or nurses before things get dark and how this dark sense of humour is a obvious reaction and way of dealing with the tragedy and death that surrounds their daily work.
We speak about Brossie flirting with medical studies but instead went into science. She explains what she studied and I think I understand it now, so you’ll have to listen but she’s gone into education now and sure y’know, I ask the obvious questions about what animals she’ll be dissecting in front of pupils. Spud and Brossie share a couple of disgusting stories about the animals that were dissecting in their schools in the 1990s. Oh, how things have changed.
We chat for a bit about some of the commonalities between teaching and stand-up comedy. When I started the podcast in a strange coincidence I had a fierce amout of teachers on, not had one in a while again so wanted to broach a few more questions on the shared characteristics that both things share.
We have a good old chat then about how and why Brossie got into stand-up comedy and what has really impressed me the most is the amount she gigs up and down the country for someone who is still very new to performing stand-up comedy.
We talk for a bit about the thriving live comedy circuit in Ireland and especially about the collaborate nature of it and even though, of course, not everyone will get along with each other people seem to be able to put their differences aside and work together on putting on good shows.
Brexit gets a very quick mention, Brossie says something along the lines of, it’s like the kid who bullied you in school is in jail now, but you just want it to be over.
We talk for a bit then about how quitting smoking and being at a terrible house party led to her taking the first steps of getting into stand-up comedy. I ask Brossie too about how many gigs was she into it before it all went south and she bombed. She owns it and speaks about it and tells us how she moved on and didn’t let it get her down.
Siobhan’s a funny name, non-Irish people really struggle with it. What’s the weirdest thing she’s been called?
We get talking then about gigging in your hometown and why gigging in front of your friends can be a bit strange, both from a perspective where you might get ‘fake’ laughs and as well you might get a bit nervous that you’re showing an element of your personality that they’ve not noticed before.
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