Interview with Kiri Pritchard-McLean, comedian

"I think learning should be lifelong and teachers can be as impactful as parents in a young person’s life so you can make tangible change. Also, you can do it hungover if they’re young enough."

Could you first introduce yourself to the reader?

My name is Kiri Pritchard-McLean and I’m a comedian.

How would you describe your show?

BIG! Big themes, big routines, big laughs and most importantly, big hair. 

Why do you want to perform at Edinburgh Festival Fringe?

I’m excited to be heading back to the fringe after a few years away, it’s lovely to have so many of my pals (and enemies) in the same place. Also, Edinburgh is a great city to eat your way around for a month. 

What differentiates it from other festivals?

I think the scale makes the Edinburgh totally unique. Not just in terms of audience and performer scale but also scale of venue sizes, the innovation that encourages at both ends of the spectrum. I always come away inspired because when the world rocks up and shows off for a month solid, how can you not?

What first motivated you to enter the industry? Who were your inspirations?

I was obsessed with The League of Gentlemen and wanted to find my own comedy group – it was very literally the only reason I went to university. Luckily for me I met me sketch group, Gein’s Family Giftshop there so the pipe dream became a reality. 

How has your background, upbringing and education had an impact on your artistic career?

It’s hard to say because I have nothing to compare it to that isn’t pure conjecture. I think my parents are both grafters and I’ve inherited that which is fortunate because I’m testament to the fact you can make a teaspoon of talent fill an ocean if you fill the rest with hard work. 

What is your earliest childhood art memory?

Art? I don’t have one -–not really much opportunity for those growing up on a working farm in rural Wales. 

If you didn’t have your current job, what would you probably be doing?

I think I’d be teaching – I did it alongside comedy, often teaching drama and comedy for a long time. I think learning should be lifelong and teachers can be as impactful as parents in a young person’s life so you can make tangible change. Also, you can do it hungover if they’re young enough.

Did Covid-19 change the way you create work? Do you approach shows with a different mentality now?

I think Covid 19 gave me a greater awareness of the need for meaningful and committed access in the arts for audiences and performers. I’m now aware that there’s an obligation to provide online access to shows for those who can’t attend in person. So, I don’t make my shows any differently, but I do try and work out how the show can honour accessibility. 

Describe the last year in 5 words or less?

Two thousand and twenty one. 

Do you subscribe to the idea that art should be exempt from ‘cancel culture’?

It is, show me someone’s who’s been “cancelled” and I’ll show you a millionaire, unrepentant abuser. 

What advice would you give to someone who wants to take a show up to the fringe?

Measure your expectations and make sure you live with people who wash up and keep reasonable hours.

When and where can people see your show?

I’m at Monkey Barrel every night at 19.05

And where can people find, follow and like you online?

I’m on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and wikifeet. Just search my name and I’ll be there!


Kiri Pritchard-McLean: Home Truths can be seen at Monkey Barrel every night at 7:05pm from 3-28th August. For tickets and more information, visit edfringe.com

Header Image Credit: Drew Forsyth

Author

Tom Inniss

Tom Inniss Voice Team

Tom is the Editor of Voice. He is a politics graduate and holds a masters in journalism, with particular interest in youth political engagement and technology. He is also a mentor to our Voice Contributors, and champions our festivals programme, including the reporter team at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

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