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JOEL CREASEY Storm Warning

Joel Creasey - Photo by Ed Purnomo
Joel Creasey – Photo by Ed Purnomo

 

Comedian Joel Creasey is a rising star around the world and he’ll be stopping through his hometown of Perth for Fringe World 2015 to give his freshest show, The Hurricane, its world debut. He took a moment to chat with us about his international and domestic successes as well as how he got his very young start in the comedy business at seventeen.

Joel finished up school and went straight into stand-up with his parents’ blessing. “My parents have always been really, really supportive. They never actually said to me, ‘Should you have a back-up plan, should you go to uni?’ They were just like ‘Yeah, let’s do it!’ which is so wonderful,” he says. He tells us his exposure to the world of stand-up began at 16 when “I got internet in my room, which was very rock-and-roll. I remember late one night watching Joan Rivers and Kathy Griffin and Ellen and all those great dames of stand-up.”

Although he says he was never the class clown, “I was always the snarky boy that sat at the back and judged the teacher’s shoes,” he jokes, but there was one teacher in particular that gave him the motivation to go from the back of the class to behind the mic. “I had a very magical teacher in grade 11 and grade 12; she was very much like my Dead Poets Society teacher. In grade 12 as a graduation gift, she gave everyone a Mr. Men book and she gave me the Mr. Funny one, and that was kinda when I was like, ‘Oh! Ok, well then, this says it – guess I’d better go and do stand-up!’

His parents have stayed involved in his career, although he says his mum may have become too involved. She rang him up asking to see him the day after she saw his show in London. “I thought maybe she needed to come around and discuss something about Christmas. She comes around to my apartment to give me feedback about my show that I’d done the night before. My most successful show that I’d been doing all year. This is a woman with no stand-up comedy experience,” he says with his characteristic snark.

They also came to see him perform in New York last year with one of his comedy idols, Joan Rivers, for some of her final shows before passing away last year. He recounts a very special moment when, after introducing Rivers, she called him back on stage and proceeded to read a five star review from Time Out New York of his solo show to the audience, which included his parents. She spoke directly to them, saying how lucky they were to have such a great stand-up for a son. “It was so cool to get that particular approval from Joan to them. And she died two weeks later. It was so untimely; she had years and years and years left in her,” he remarks.

But he’s not without his detractors. Apparently he has an online hater named Darren that trolls him on a regular basis. He says, “If I’m not being trolled, I start freaking out. ‘Where is Darren my online hater? Why is he not hating me today?’ Darren HATES me, but honestly, I think I might be falling in love with him. It’s like Stockholm Syndrome. He doesn’t realise that every time he tells me to die, I fall a little bit more in love with him.” Let’s hope that unlikely love story has a happy ending, or at least that it doesn’t end in tears or lawsuits.

CICELY BINFORD

Joel Creasey performs The Hurricane as part of Fringe World 2015 at Gold Digger in the Perth Cultural Centre from January 23 – 25. For tickets and session times, go to fringeworld.com.au

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