“Children are basically just drunk people, aren't they?” suggests Fin Taylor, revealing the thinking behind his Shepherds Bush Comedy stand-up show for kids.
Specifically, he is explaining the difference in the way he handles heckling from a post-pub crowd, and the possibly more daunting prospect of a bunch of five to 10-year-olds. “Slurring, can't speak properly, being sick – there's not a lot of difference,” he says with a wry smile.
Taylor is a comedian of impressive range. He is one of a number of performers taking part in the inaugural Shepherds Bush Comedy Festival – organised by Hammersmith & Fulham Council in partnership with the Bush and PBJ Management – over the weekend of 1-4 June, at the newly renovated venue in Uxbridge Road.
A darling of the Edinburgh Festival, his Fringe shows there are very much for an adult audience, and are very funny indeed. But, not content with enduring the terrifying prospect of an adult stand-up show, he does it all for kids whenever he gets the chance too.
He describes the challenge as being one that interrogates ‘a different part of your brain’. “It removes the artifice from what you do,” he says. “It's just being silly in front of a bunch of kids, really.”
Taylor's silliness is of a brand that is very child friendly – and he insists the array of innocent faces means there is never an overlap with the material from his very grown-up after-dark material.
However, he pitches the school-age show as something which should be equally pleasing to the mums and dads who act as their minders – a knowing nod in their direction, which elevates junior fun time into something trans-generational.
“What I'm trying to create is a brilliant way of keeping the children entertained, while their parents can enjoy the show too,” he says.
Taylor is a Shepherds Bush resident, living just over the road from the Bush Theatre; and he sees the venue as a sort of second home – he can often be found writing material in the cafe there.
“It's great to give something back to the place,” he said. “Local community festivals are all about that: I know the audience will be nice, and it will also be good to see some of the other acts.”
He'll just be hoping stand-up for kids turns out to be child’s play.
Stand up for Kids is at the Shepherds Bush Comedy Festival, Bush Theatre, 12pm, Saturday 3rd June. Tickets are free.
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