Scott Capurro

May 19, 2011

A feature from Time Out Mumbai. I know. HOT!!!

Filed under: Articles, Blog Posts, reviews — Scott @ 8:29 pm

Repeat offender (******)
Scott Capurro has made a living out of pissing people off, says Aditya Kundalkar.

You might remember Scott Capurro as one of the guys who helped Robin Williams become Mrs Doubtfire in the 1993 movie. Even if you don’t, you’re not likely to forget his gig at The Comedy Store this fortnight. Capurro has earned a reputation for being a provocative comedian. The list of people he’s offended include Christians, “Japs”, racists, “lezzers”, children, vegetarians… the list goes on. He’s known for being candid about gay sexuality and when he spoke to Time Out from his London home, he said he was researching Mumbai’s queer culture and getting ready for his first gig in India.
What kind of preparations have you made?
Well, I’ve got my typhoid shots. I’ve been told to be careful with cold food handled by hand. And I know that homosexuality was decriminalised last year so I’m not supposed to worry about that. Although I am worried that someone will get up and break a beer bottle over my head. I had a nose job three years ago and it cost a couple of grand and my father would be really annoyed if it got broken.
Do you always think about your gigs so much?
Not really. Not in Europe, I don’t worry. In America, my set’s a bit different. But that’s really because Americans are not interested in European politics at all. For India, I’ve been told to not talk about London – the Indians don’t really care. The more you talk about America the better off you are.
You’ve been described as the most scathing stand-up comedian. It couldn’t have been easy to earn that title. I have to be cautious to a point. When I play in parts of America that aren’t San Francisco or New York or LA, it can be a bit terrifying. I can see people squirming and I can only assume they’re doing it because they hate queers. And they’re not used to a gay man who’s not really, really effeminate or in drag. But I’m sure I’m going to hit on some men in the front row. I’m sure I’m going to imply I’ve had sex with them. I’m sure I’m going to make them nervous and make them anxious about their sexuality. It’s all part of what I do, but I can’t do that and not take responsibility for it. I have to be aware that it’s not my culture, it’s a new culture.
Do you ever think that what you’re about to say might be too offensive?
Sometimes I’ve forwarded emails that I shouldn’t have done. Other than that, talking about stuff, either on stage or off, I have no regrets. For example, last night at [London’s The Comedy] Store I started talking about the Koran which I intend to do when I’m in India and the audience got a little nervous. But I didn’t regret it. I feel like, y’know, Jews and Christians can laugh so Muslims should be held to the same standard, and I think that it’s a compliment to the Muslim community and to those who read the Koran to satirise it on stage because it proves that we’re all equal.
Does anything offend you?
When a comic is patronising to the audience or steals material from other comics. You can tell that their stories aren’t their own. Or all they do is tell pub jokes. The time you get on stage is your chance to alter people’s perceptions. Comics are meant to be a bit annoying or stimulating, or accusatory, or in some way alter people’s ideas about the way they see things. There’s so much to talk about in the world around us. What’s the point of ignoring it? And I’m certainly not going to talk to the audience as if they’re children. I want them to feel [like they’re] a part of the show. It’s not a fucking seminar.
Scott Capurro will perform at The Comedy Store on Thur May 26.

Now I’m truly international. Maybe I’ll do lots of yoga whilst I’m there, or just hide in my hotel room and enjoy the room service and crisp sheets. I will definitely report back. Probably on facebook, I’m becoming a fan of that. I’m so easy.

May 15, 2011

A review for my Belfast show, by Peter McCaughan from BBC Radio Ulster

Filed under: Articles, Blog Posts, reviews — Scott @ 10:20 pm

COMEDY REVIEW: Scott Capurro
The controversial comic isn’t afraid to tackle the taboo subjects on his return to Belfast

Updated: 10/05/2011

McHugh’s Basement is jam packed on the final weekend of the Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival, a sold out crowd ready to witness American comic Scott Capurro’s return to Northern Ireland. It is no surprise that the event is so popular – Capurro is one of the most notorious comedians on the scene, well known as ‘the comic who makes people cry’.

Local comedian Shane Todd gets things started. The young Holywood comic has seen his fair share of success, with numerous appearances on BBC NI television, and he delivers some well-timed gags. However, despite a handful of belly laughs from the crowd, he is met with a slightly lukewarm response. It’s not really Todd’s night.

Capurro takes to the stage sipping on a coffee and greeting the crowd warmly. Despite his fierce reputation the comic is instantly likeable. His wicked material is delivered with a deadpan camp drawl, combined with a lot of heart and a lack of fear.

It’s difficult to relate his material in detail, as Capurro’s comedy is every bit as controversial and blue as is reputed. Much more importantly, however, it is extremely funny. Not just funny, but ribticklingly hilarious – Capurro delivers far more than just the shock laughs he is best known for.

The barrage of gags comes thick and fast. Capurro is a consummate professional and thinks on his feet with impressive speed.

Throughout the evening, just about every conceivable taboo is not just broken, but pummelled beyond recognition. A large proportion of the jokes are pointed not only at the audience, but at the comedian himself.

Topics covered include Capurro’s reaction to the anti-gay sentiments of certain members of the muslim community in London (where he is now based); why he has sexual fantasies involving Jesus but not Muhammad; how it’s OK to make holocaust gags because ‘nobody laughs in Germany anyway’; as well as an assortment of one liners involving the royal family, Christopher Reeve, AIDs, fisting, anal rape and paedophilia.

This might sound shocking, and it is. But one must hear these jokes in context to appreciate their point. It is clear that Capurro is definitely not, as has been reported before, a bigot, racist or, indeed, the antichrist.

The evening is spiced up even further with some genuinely thought-provoking banter between Capurro and audience members of various nationalities and sexualities seated in the front row. The night culminates in a graphic, screaming whirlwind of a foul mouthed one-man re-enactment of a particularly shocking sex act that the comic had previously engaged in with his boyfriend.

It is perhaps surprising that there is a lack of Northern Ireland specific material – the Troubles are usually easy pickings for boundary-pushing comedians. Indeed, after the gig, I overhear an audience member criticise Capurro for ‘not being political enough’. However, it almost feels like a reprieve to avoid the easy jokes of this ilk.

Obviously, Scott Capurro is a comic who subscribes to the notion that comedy should have no boundaries. His logic dictates that to avoid certain ‘untouchable’ subjects only breeds prejudice. Everything must be open to ridicule, or nothing is.

This is a sentiment I can understand, although for me there is a further stipulation: the material should also be funny and not just provocative or mean-spirited for the sake of it. Furthermore, it should be thought-provoking and ideally delivered with skill, style and charisma. Fortunately for Belfast, Capurro has all these qualities and more.

Me: Thankfully there’s no star rating, so one must read the review. How oldy worldy and truly stimulating. xx