Edinburgh Comedy Award nominee Josie Long heads to Reading

PUBLISHED: 13:58 03 February 2020 | UPDATED: 13:58 03 February 2020

Josie Long

Josie Long


In February, three-time Edinburgh Comedy Award nominee Josie Long brings her new show to Reading’s Concert Hall. We caught up with her to find out all about it...

Josie Long is back on the road with her new show, Tender, about the mind-bending intensity of new motherhood, but it is also about kindness, gentleness and joy.

A cult-optimist herself, Josie wants her audiences to feel positive about the future. Of course, society's biggest issues that we're facing today, from climate change to Boris Johnson, cannot be ignored, but Tender's main focus is about bringing new life into this ever-changing world.

Josie became a mum herself almost two years ago. "I love motherhood," she says. "It's joyful and I feel lucky to have this wonderful little person, 
even though I get no sleep!

"I started thinking about bringing someone into this world when everyone thinks it's the end of the world. I began to look at things through fresh eyes, and to think about the kindness and tenderness, and decided to make my new show about that.

"When you go on stage you're telling your story to the audience about where you are in life, what you want and what you're fascinated by. You have to be open, personal and genuine. I share anecdotes from when I grew up, things going on with me right now, and topical subjects like climate change."

Josie says she has always loved TV and radio comedy. "I'm a comedy nerd! I started performing it aged 14. I found it such an adrenalin rush," she says.

She has won the BBC New Comedy Award, Chortle Best Newcomer, Best Newcomer at the 2006 Edinburgh Comedy Awards and then was nominated for Best Show at the Edinburgh Comedy Awards three years running.

"I feel very proud of what I've achieved," she says. "It really gives your confidence a boost too. But what I really want is to get people to come to my new show."

On screen, Josie has been seen on 8 Out of 10 Cats, Never Mind the Buzzcocks, You Have Been Watching and Skins, for which she also wrote.

"I have also been making films with Doug King for a decade now," she says. And she even earned a BAFTA Scotland New Talent Award nomination for her two short feature films, Let's Go Swimming and Romance and Adventure. Her Super November film was nominated for a BIFA Discovery Award.

So what are her plans for the future? "I would love to develop Super November as a TV show," she says. "I'd like to make more films, write more comedy drama for TV and continue to write and perform the best comedy shows I can.

"But first, I'm looking forward to coming to Reading. I love going anywhere where I can siwm in the river then do a gig."

Josie's new podcast, Speaking With Shadows, is available now at english-heritage.org.uk/visit/inspire-me/speaking-with-shadows/episode-1/

Tender comes to Reading's Concert Hall on 29 February; readingarts.com

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