An actress by trade since she was 18 - you’ll recognise her from TV series like Twenty Twelve and Being Human - in 2007 Sara Pascoe decided to try her hand at stand up comedy as a means of “keeping herself busy” during the downtime between jobs.
“It can be quite heartbreaking if you want to dedicate your life to something like acting,” she says. “The stand up kept my creative side alive. I loved it because you don’t need anyone. You can write five minutes on the bus and go and try it out. I found it completely compulsive without having an agenda... I just kept going.”
Safe to say Sara has kept herself more than busy with what began as a hobby.
The 33-year-old, who has toured as a stand up all over the world, now considers herself a full-time comic when she’s not acting. She has just kicked off her first UK tour proper, which comes to The Stand Newcastle on Tuesday (Nov 4).
Sara Pascoe vs History picked up a Fosters Comedy Award nomination up at the Fringe in the summer, and she’s looking forward to more people getting to see it.
“Edinburgh is never a science,” she says, speaking during a mini-break in Paris before the tour gets into full swing this week. “You just never know, so it’s a happy accident if things go right and a learning experience if things go wrong. I was really pleased with how things went though.”
Having enjoyed a string of TV appearances over the past year or so - Mock The Week, Never Mind the Buzzcocks, QI, Have I Got News For You, Live At The Apollo - more and more people are getting to know what to expect from Sara’s stand up, but what if you haven’t seen her yet?
“It’s not your kind of gag-based comedy,” she says. “I tend to talk through a lot of ideas and analogies... it’s more cerebral I suppose. This show (Sara Pascoe vs History) was inspired by me falling in love.
“Me writing a show is similar to how I imagine it is to be a bad painter,” she laughs. “So you might set out to draw a tree and it ends up being something else. I thought the show would be about the car journey I was on when I fell in love with my boyfriend, who is a comedian.
“But then I started writing and researching into the baggage we take into new relationships - like old relationships, the relationships of our parents and that kind of thing - and I got really interested in pair bonding.
“There were all of these theories about how and why we pair-bond and how difficult it is. That’s why we get it wrong so often.”
Unlike her own career, which seems to be going from strength to strength.
“I feel so lucky that I’m able to do acting jobs once in a while, while working full time as a comic around that. It’s really fantastic. Stand up is a unique art form in that if you’re solid and put the hours in at the beginning, after a certain point, you can earn a living from it. That’s pretty special.”
- Sara Pascoe vs History is at The Stand Newcastle on Tuesday (Nov 4). Visit www.thestand.co.uk or call 0844 693 3336 for tickets.