Charming slacker Seann Walsh has a dream career

Seann Walsh
Seann Walsh
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The Brighton-born comedian brings his new show to the Dome Corn Exchange on Saturday, October 25.

For one of the UK comedy circuit’s most popular stand-ups Brighton-born Seann Walsh has a bit of problem with motivation.

His 2013 show, ‘The Lie-In King’, explored his experiences of living alone and trying to sort his life out.

Now, in his new show, ‘28’, Seann’s living with his girlfriend...and she’s trying to sort his life out instead.

Seann brings his scruffy charm to the Brighton Dome Corn Exchange on Saturday, October 25, at 7.30pm.

“Every year I have to take a show up to the Edinburgh Comedy Festival and I just write about that year of my life, really,” Seann explains, talking about one “extreme change” since his 2013 show.

“I moved in with my girlfriend quite quickly, so my life is different now,” he explains. “Now I’ve got to be proactive and I can’t just lie down all day.”

Seann reveals how this goes against his nature.

“If she goes out I will just revert back to what I was like,” he says. “But if I go out and she stays in, for example, she’s done stuff, like bought a mug or come up with some ideas for the garden or re-arranged the shoes in the hallway...”

“If she goes out and comes back and I’m there, I haven’t moved and nothing’s changed apart from the flat stinks more,” he laughs.

Luckily, Seann’s lack of energy hasn’t transferred to his comedy. His website lists dozens of gigs, he’s starred in his own TV series Seann Walsh World and he’s set to become a team captain on E4’s new quiz show Virtually Famous. He’s also made hit appearances on BBC1’s Live At The Apollo, Michael McIntryre’s Comedy Roadshow and Channel 4’s Stand Up For The Week.

So what drives Seann to do comedy? He says it’s just what he’s always wanted since childhood.

“I did stand-up in the playground and my parents let me stay up to watch Whose Line Is It Anyway?” he explains. “And I fell in love with Jim Carrey, when I must have been about seven.”

Seann continues: “Even though I was seven I’d watched Ace Ventura, which was a 12, and I just learnt all the words to Jim Carrey. I learnt all the voices and faces that he could pull, which I can’t do any more unfortunately, due to cigarettes.”

Maybe he can’t match Jim Carrey’s level of physical comedy, but Seann’s routines still get laughs for their accuracy.

“I think my favourite routine to do ever was about when you go upstairs on a bus and how awkward it is when there’s no seats,” he says, starting to chuckle. “So you have to walk back down.”

He continues, trying to stifle his laughter: “I’m laughing now. I swear to God I don’t normally laugh at my own routines.”

It’s a dream career for someone who enjoyed mucking about as a kid and I have to check whether it’s true that Seann finished high school with just one GCSE.

“I can’t even remember if I left with one GCSE to be honest,” he sighs. “But yeah, I didn’t really get on with school. I wasn’t really there and when I was... most of the time I was kicked out of class.”

I ask whether that was because Seann didn’t like formal education.

“Or because I was thick,” he laughs. “I was too hyper as a child. You wouldn’t have got me to do anything. I’d no interest in sitting down behind a desk. I was much more interested in smoking in the woods, which is mainly what I did.”

Seann’s real education – the kind that’s led to a successful comedy career – seems to have taken place outside of the classroom with Brighton playing a huge part in influencing his stand-up.

“There’s nowhere else like it in the country,” he says. “It’s just such a creative place with such creative people.”

“It’s got such a young spirit,” he continues. “No one grows up in Brighton and I mean that.”

He laughs: “If they do grow up it takes such a long time. It’s like someone’s put out some sort of gas in Brighton and only Brightonians get with it. It just chills them out much more than everyone else.

“I know it’s a cliché but it’s so laid back that it lends itself to sort of...pondering.

“All I used to do was, between like the age of 19 and 25, was just go to coffee shops.”

“And I was not the only one doing that,” he explains.

“You could see that’s what most people were doing – sitting there, drinking coffee and thinking.

“I live in London now and there’s no time to do that,” he says.

“Everyone has to be somewhere very quickly. Everyone’s in a rush to catch the tube, to catch the train, to catch the bus, so there’s not time to really just sit back and look at life and, if you’re a comedian, think about how funny it is.”

It’s certainly funny how things have turned out for someone with a reputation for being a slacker. Seann’s now at a level where he’s mixing with many famous faces from the UK comedy scene.

“Lee Evans and Jack Dee in particular stand out for me,” says Seann, explaining that this isn’t just for the huge influence these figures have had on comedy. With an odd mixture of respect and flippancy Seann enthuses about what great guys they are.

“That’s wonderful to know,” he muses. “That those people you adored when you were younger are not *********.”

Tickets for Seann’s show cost £15 (£13 concessions). Call 01273 709709 or click here