Interview with Peter White

In the run up to Voice's latest coverage of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, we have dozens of interviews with performers like Canadian comedian Peter White, who we'll be seeing up there.

Interview with Peter White

PETER WHITE Arts Awards Voice

Firstly, could you introduce yourself, and give a quick summary of your show?

My name is Peter White, I'm a comedian originally from Canada. "Straight White Male" is a show about race, gender, and sexuality and the place of a straight white male in the world today. It's both more liberal and more funny than it sounds.

What is your earliest arts memory?

When I was young my parents would always watch Just For Laugh's, and I was fascinated with these guys who were entertaining thousands of people with nothing but a microphone

What first encouraged you to become a performer?

When I was in high school in Canada I ran for class president, and got to make a speech. I had no idea what I was talking about, but I tried to be funny and it worked and I won. I then did a terrible job and everyone regretted it, but I was hooked on performing.

Do you remember your first professional performance, and how did it go?

The first time I got paid was after I had been doing open mics for about 2 months. I got booked to do 15 minutes at a company Christmas party. It was exciting because before that I had never ruined 300 people's collective night before. I was never asked back.

What do you feel is the best thing about your job?

Not having a boss or anyone I have to please. I get to say what I want, and no one else has any input. Also free booze.

Conversely, what is the worst?

Months in a row on the road. It makes it tough to have any sort of real life. Also the aforementioned Christmas party.

How do you decide whether or not a show has gone well?

You know it's bad when the people leaving are too embarrassed for you to even make eye contact.

If you could work with anybody, dead or alive, who would you choose to collaborate with?

Louis CK. Dead. Weekend at Bernies style.

What made you want to come to Edinburgh Festival Fringe?

The goal is always to try to stand out amongst the best, and where else could you do that but here? Plus any time you can spend a month of summer in Scotland you have to jump at it. Who needs sunshine and beaches?

Is performing at EdFringe different from 'traditional' shows?

This will be my first time up, so I guess we'll find out. I think the biggest change is to do the same show in the same venue every day. It will be a grind, but luckily a healthy Scottish diet should help me maintain…

If you could travel back in time and give 16 year-old you one piece of advice, what would it be?

Stop eating tubby.

What advice would you give to young people who want to enter the industry?

Don't look at what anyone else is doing professionally. Focus on you. It's not a race. Work hard, work often, and things will work out.

Do you have social media that our readers can follow you on?

I have both twitter (@peterawhite) and facebook (https://www.facebook.com/peter.white.735)

Where can people catch your show during EdFringe?

Just the Tonic at the Mash House. 6:20 pm, Aug 4-28 (not 15).

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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