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No topic too hot for Scott Capurro in Bromley

PUBLISHED: 17:24 10 November 2010

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The Conde Nast Publications Ltd

The veteran stand-up comic gets frustraed by political correctness ahead of his gig at Bromley Comedy Club

Scott Capurro is a little worried about his next gig – at the innocuous Bromley Comedy Club of all places.

The gay American comic hasn’t lost his outrageous nerve – but after an interview where he felt unable to be himself this week, the familiar guest on 8 Out Of 10 Cats is railing against the circuit.

“I just said yes to these two gigs but now it feels like people are getting more serious about it,” said the 47-year-old circuit veteran.

“When we turn comedy into a career it just gets menacing. People set up these comedy clubs in the 80s, now it’s buttering their bread and they’re worried about comics offending their audiences.

“People are so worried. You can’t be creative in that atmosphere. What people will get from you is an incredibly base set.”

To be fair, the funnyman so well known for his Julian Clary styled gay-sex-shock routines doesn’t seem to be complaining about the relatively new comedy club at The Churchill Theatre – his appearance there will be somewhat of a coup de grace.

He explained: “You have this flyer for the show where I ask questions about Islam and abortion and I think people maybe read them and maybe got a little worked up about it.”

Presumably there were a couple of nervous phone conversations with bosses at the Churchill – but that’s all.

Instead, the sharp, thinking-man’s comedian seems at a loss with the whole nation’s attitude towards stand up, and comedy in general.

“Why worry about it?” he continued. “People should Google acts before they go and see them!

“If you want to go and see a clown then find a circus. Comics are a**holes. That’s what they do. Have you ever read Shakespeare? That’s how we have always been.

“The day Diana died I had to warm up the audience for a gig and I did some Diana jokes and people said ‘oh it’s too soon’. I said ‘no, now it’s funny’.

“Our job is to make the uncomfortable palatable.”

Capurro is amazed that peers like Frankie Boyle get slated for making ever more outrageous jokes – in Boyle’s case about rape and Madeleine McCann. He loved Julian Clary’s infamous comment about doing a certain something to something to Norman Lamont at an awards ceremony. He says he likes the nervous energy that comics build up in audiences who feel a touch uncomfortable with the material unfolding before them.

However, when people fail to Google his performances, they’re likely to be in for a rude awakening.

“When I was performing at the Camden Fringe this family brought in their two bright-eyed teenagers. Why were they were? It was the Camden Fringe and people were expecting something outrageous so I got my little man out.

“I mean, what I’m doing is illegal right? Getting it out in front of two 14-year-olds with their grandmother? It’s okay because it’s art. But people said I didn’t have to include that – yes I did, it would have been boring to conform to the situation.”

Whilst he’s happy to draw out our deepest laughs with graphic humour, don’t be fooled into thinking that Capurro’s wit isn’t going to be mature. He likes to joke about Obama and his latest material – about his mother’s death – is, bizarrely, no joke.

“We were very close and I’m finding it very hard. to deal with – I’m having something of a mid-life crisis.”

Demonstrating his ability to put his money where mouth is when it comes to defending on the knuckle comedy, Capurro shows he’s prepared to cut to the marrow.

“It’s been a very rough last two years and I’m joking about it – I guess I need to find the funny side to it,” he added.

● Scott Capurro is due to perform at Bromley Comedy Club at the Churchill Theatre this Saturday, November 13.

For tickets priced £10.90, see ambassadortickets.com/bromley or call 0844 871 7627.

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