ED2015 Comedy ED2015 Interviews ED2015 Week1 Edition

Goose: Set loose with a one-man cartoon

By | Published on Friday 14 August 2015


Adam Drake and Ben Rowse are, together, Goose. Ben writes and directs. Adam writers and performs. Together they create a “sweaty one-man cartoon”. Well, the sweat is all Adams. Having formed a working partnership in 2013 to co-write the one man farce ‘Robin’, they returned to the Fringe last year under the Goose moniker, winning plenty of acclaim along the way. And now they return with a brand new show called ‘Kablamo’. We set the duo the task of filling out a Goose-themed questionnaire and these are the answers they gave us.

CC: Let’s start at the start, tell me about both your Fringe experiences before you started properly working together.
G: Adam did the Footlights tour show, so has experience of playing to sell-out rooms. There’s no substitute for this kind of experience and they’re right: it has really helped us see how far we’re falling short of success. Ben did nothing except watch shows and take up floor space.

CC: How did you come to work together on ‘Robin’?
G: We knew each other at uni and Adam prodded Ben into writing a comedy-y play-y thing-y. It started with just Adam onstage and no one complained enough at the time. Give them an inch… it’s all got horribly out of hand.

CC: Was it your intention to work together long term back in 2013 or did it just evolve from there?
G: Evolved. But not in a definitive, cool Pokemon-style. The pace has been more of a Darwinian ‘monkeys to man’, but we feel we’re moving towards something we feel really comfortable in. Ben (Ben’s dad) has a strict ‘assess-how-it’s-going-every-year’ policy, which has been quite useful in making sure we improve a little every year, while also terrifying us.

CC: You describe Adam as the “sweaty one-man cartoon”. What can we expect from a Goose show?
G: It’s one man doing a breakneck poly-character sketch show with a narrative. With lots of cutaways and all that sort of nonsense. If we had to describe the show as one single song, that song would be almost impossibly odd (and would feature Bruce Forsyth).

CC: And tell us more about ‘Kablamo’. How does it compare to previous shows?
G: So last year’s show had an opening we always enjoyed performing, a spoof biopic of David Schwimmer, and the pace and pointlessness of it sort of seemed to suit us. So expect more of that: sweaty edifices of nothing.

CC: How do you go about creating your shows, how does the collaboration process work?
G: We put on a series of tortuous previews, then chuck it all out in the last two weeks and paper over the cracks. It is almost unbelievably inefficient.

CC: Since formally launching as Goose, what has been happening for you guys beyond Edinburgh?
G: We do shows in London, so there’s that. And the crying. Writing the show, then changing it entirely also helps pass the time, until the panic sets in.

CC: So is the Fringe now very much part of your performance year?
G: Yeah, it feels like the weather turning and we should be out on a porch muttering ‘Edinburgh’s a-brewin…’, except it’s not the weather than changes, it’s the colour and consistency of your poos.

CC: Adam – you help run the Suspiciously Cheap Comedy night in London. So will be talent scouting while in Edinburgh too?
G: Suspiciously Cheap Comedy has been one of the most fun things we’ve ever done: we get to hang out with Gein’s Family Giftshop, watch our favourite acts and – so far – we’ve had really lovely audiences. We’ll maybe be thinking about Suspiciously Cheap this Fringe, but ‘talent scouting’ makes us sound a bit too cool-for-school. Maybe ‘talent begging’?

CC: Any shows you’d like to tip right now?
G: Well, Gein’s Family Giftshop, obviously. We’ve now recommended each other so many times, as comedy acts but also spouses to our siblings. Emma Sidi we saw last night and she blew us away. Liam Williams, The Pin, Lolly Adefope, Max And Ivan, Beard and Joseph Morpurgo. Also, Daphne, although this is as much a logistical tip as a comedy tip – book now as they’ve almost sold out every date ever. And many more…

CC: I hear there might be possible TV pilots in the pipeline. What are your ambitions for Goose?
G: Get a little bit better every year.

‘Kablamo’ was performed at Assembly George Square at Edinburgh Festival 2015.

LINKS: goosecomedy.co