You would be hard pressed to find someone as naturally funny as Ireland’s own Neil Delamere.
Known for his stand up and TV work, the comedian is embarking on an Irish tour in early 2019, focusing on the current state of the world and all that comes with it.
Controlled Substance, according to Neil, comes from the idea that people believe they have control over their lives, but in reality there’s things like Brexit and American president Donald Trump that they can’t control at all.
Neil told Dublin Gazette: “The show comes from the idea that we all think we have control over our lives, and that’s what we want. We all want just enough money so that we can tell our boss to feck off or whatever. That’s my theory.
“In the last couple of years, I realised we have less control over things and we have to just go with the flow, just laugh at it a bit.
“The show takes in Brexit and Donald Trump, the EU. It’s about trying to come to terms with that slight lack of control.”
“There’s always laughs to be had, particularly when things are so extreme. Like how little Tory politicians know about the border, like that half man half golden retriever Boris Johnson trying to talk about it.
“Also, like when I was in a taxi in Belfast when Trump was elected, and the driver said to me ‘wow, American is so divided now, with democrats and republicans.
“I couldn’t live in a place that divided’, and I was like ‘right, drop me at the peace wall here Seamus, we’re in Belfast here if you don’t remember’.
“The show sounds serious, but I promise it’s funny – there’s lots of laughs in it.”
Neil trialled the new show at this year’s Edinburgh Fringe Festival, saying that the 25-night run helped him to hone the show, to perfect it to what Irish audiences will see in 2019.
“People have been digging it, because it’s about what’s going on the world. It’s not so much a story as much of a collection of ideas.”
As for his fringe experience, he says this year was a lot better than his debut at the Scottish comedy monolith.
“The first time I did it many years ago, my agent gave me a box of chocolates on the last day of the festival as a fair play for getting through it, and I was able to give a chocolate to every person in the audience – and I didn’t even get through to the second layer in the box!
“At the start it’s a tough slog, but the next year more people came, then I started work on Irish TV, then I started featuring on the odd British radio show, and this year I sold out the run.
“It’s like a FAS course for comedians, like an apprenticeship. You’re paying for the experience, so you get a bit better as what you’re trying to do.”
With the Edinburgh Fringe under his belt, Delamere will next face audiences at DLR Mill Theatre on January 11th, Vicar Street on February 8th and 9th and Draiocht on March 9th.
When asked what audiences could look forward to from the shows, Delamere made some hefty claims that will have to be seen to be believed!
“Every show, I will be curing people. It’ll be like Lourdes; the Lourdes of comedy. I will hear you through laughter! I think I might have over sold it there have I?
“Next thing I know there will be mini buses of people pulling up outside Vicar Street like it’s a revival tent in the middle of Texas! I’ll start pushing people back into the arms of their relatives to try to cure them.
“In all seriousness, it’s a bit of craic, a bit of light relief from the trials and tribulations of the world for a couple of hours.”