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Karma Comedian

Cityscape catches up with former Christchurch comedian and Court Jesters founder Cal Wilson about her new show, telling it how it is, life across the ditch, and her love of iconic Kiwi eats.

Where did the inspiration for Things I’ve Never Said come from?
I’ve always been a bit of a people pleaser, and I just decided it was time to start saying how I really feel about stuff – all the big things like politics, feminism, and people who put clothes on their dogs.

You’re doing your one woman show for one night only – how life-ruining will it be if we miss it?
So life-ruining! There’s a free buffet, helicopter rides and I give away a car. NONE OF THAT IS TRUE (except the life-ruining part). You’ll be missing me taking on an emu, Enid Blyton, and a no-necked rump vampire.

Australia, quite rightly, loves you – was it a hard market to crack as a Kiwi?
Australia has always been very good to me – the hardest part was getting them to stop telling me sheep jokes.

You were a founder of the Court Jesters. What’s your fondest memory of those days?
Everything about it! Getting to perform every week at the Court Theatre with my favourite people. The bonkers semi-improvised kids’ shows we did every school holidays – my favourite feedback after a great show was from a small girl: I asked “Did you enjoy that?” and she said, witheringly, “No. You can’t sing.” (There is no singing in this show.)

What’s it like performing for a home crowd?
It’s the best. Although sometimes you’re half way through a story and you realise the people you’re talking about are actually in the audience...

How did growing up in Christchurch hone your comedy?
Christchurch gave me the Court Jesters and Scared Scriptless, which gave me the best training for my comedy career. It also gave me the best story about my worst ever gig, which involved drunk angry chicken factory workers, and me being pelted with chicken drumsticks.

What’s on the top of your to do list when you’re back in Christchurch?
Hug all my family, have breakfast at C1, see as many shows as I can at the Festival, and stock up on Coupland’s Cheese Busters, Watties Tomato Sauce, and Vogel’s bread (I miss them almost as much as I miss my family!).

Cal Wilson: Things I've Never Said
Jan 19
Phillip Carter Auditorium

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