Ever wondered what it might be like to step into someone else’s shoes for a day? Dara O Briain’s for instance; a world-class stand-up comedian and television presenter based in the UK and Ireland, who is bringing his show 'Voice Of Reason' to Australia.
We love the Irish, don’t we? There’s just something about that accent that lends itself to comedy, and Dara O Briain’s the guy who knows how to deliver.
When asked about how and where his roots began forming in the comedy business – Dara was straight into it and his wit ensues with the flow of a naturally intelligent human being, as he explains how he found himself, rather unexpectedly, in front of audiences.
While attending University College in Dublin with a focus on maths and theoretical physics, Dara was a self-proclaimed “nerdy, general good kid in school” but he also admired the speakers within the college’s debating circle who he says “could talk and keep an audience”.
Dara goes on to explain his ‘back then’ thoughts: “'I wish I could do that' – So in second year I entered a competition for The Union Speakers, I came across an idea for a joke and told this joke and it got a massive laugh and a round of applause.
“We had this seismic dial ‘go off’ and this needle just shoots to one side from the other into the red. Something just fired in me. I can remember getting this huge surge of adrenaline and going 'oh my God, that felt nice' and honestly it was that, it was this gig and that was the weirdest thing because it was not what anyone would have expected.”
It’s no secret now, however, that Dara’s career in comedy is solid – cemented so firmly in the entertainment industry (he’s even written a couple of children’s books) and now there’s just no telling, really, where he’ll go to next.
The Aussie tour’s an exciting announcement because now we get to see his newest work.
A two-hour show takes somewhere between three to six months to prepare.
“I try the material in small clubs, I tell the stories and see if they grow and it comes only by doing it that you realise 'I should move at this point, I should pause here, I should lean back' – all this kinda stuff,” Dara explains. “The telling of the story, the physical beat to it evolves lots of times over and over.”
If you haven’t yet checked out Dara O Briain’s work, there’s nothing quite like it. He has an innate ability to talk fast and talk funny but it goes way further; he is a master of his craft. Dara has taken 'Voice Of Reason' through the UK and Europe and the reviews have been consistent. The bar is held so high now for this comedian that we know to expect and receive brilliance.
“I’ve been doing this so long. By the time I get to Australia the show will have happened 168 times so if it’s not a polished piece in this time, then I’m totally in the wrong game.”
But his ever-present humble nature isn’t lost due to success.
“There has to be some element of ‘oh God, I hope this works’” – thoughts which Dara confesses he still has before shows.
Dara does his own intro announcement and he explains, “I go from bouncing around to 'Ladies and Gentlemen' and it just puts you in the moment a bit and then you’re right to do the show – I’ve already started the show and then you walk out. It’s a lovely time, what’s bad is an hour before that, an hour before every gig you just wanna cancel. Honestly, for my entire career just an hour before every show I go 'Ohh, can we just not do it, can we just go for a meal somewhere, we’ll sit at a pub, and have a normal night'.
“You just have to get past that bit.”
Dara O Briain Tour Dates11 September – Queensland Performing Arts Centre
13 September – State Theatre (Sydney)
16 September – Arts Centre Melbourne