Kitty Flanagan plays at Wests New Lambton on February 22. Tickets on sale at the website westsnewcastle.com.au or 49351200. To be in the running to win tickets send the words "Hello Kitty", with your name, address and telephone number, to firstname.lastname@example.org or SMS 0427 842 179.
KITTY Flanagan had a serious case of the first-show jitters at the debut show of her Hello Kitty tour in Newcastle in 2012.
But there’s definitely no need for emergency cue cards this time round.
‘‘Newcastle was the first show in the whole Hello Kitty run, I’ll always remember because I was so nervous,’’ Flanagan said.
‘‘We even had a back-up plan if I forgot what I was supposed to say because the show was so new: we had it all written out on a thing that my tour manager was going to hold up to me [side of stage] if I forgot.
‘‘I remember the show was fantastic and when I came off the stage, we couldn’t believe it, my tour manager was like, ‘I can’t believe you remembered it’, and I couldn’t believe it either.’’
Flanagan has taken Hello Kitty across the country and is back to play Wests New Lambton on February 22.
And if you caught her last time, rest assured the material – and the annoyances and curiosities that inspired it – have changed.
‘‘Newcastle is very special, I’m thrilled to be going back ... I do have a lot of people asking if I’m coming back because they missed the first one,’’ the comedian said.
‘‘The show has certainly evolved as I’ve gone round the country, mostly things just get added to the point that someone eventually says, ‘This show is quite long now’ and I think, ‘Oh, I should probably leave something out’ [laughs] ... I wouldn’t say [the inspiration] has changed, I’m probably just more angry about things now, like before I went, ‘Oh this is annoying’ but now I’m like, ‘On, I hate this!’’’
In addition to her regular spot on Channel Ten’s The Project for the best part of five years, Flanagan has been a familiar face on the Australian comedy scene for years – appearing on Full Frontal, The Sketch Show and I Can’t Believe It’s Not Better.
She was also a regular contributor to The Micallef Program, Good News Week and Spicks & Specks.
Flanagan has taken her solo stand-up across the world, but these days she’s adopted a slower pace.
With a ‘‘tiny, weeny entourage of two’’ – her sister and show co-star Penny Flanagan and tour manager and fellow Full Frontal alumni, Newcastle’s own Glenn Butcher, founding member of the 1980s Newcastle comedy troupe the Castanet Club.
The trio tour for just a few days at a time before heading home to Sydney for two weeks, for Penny to see her children.
‘‘It means that we all enjoy it. It means that I’m not six months in, having worked every single night, just going, ‘Oh God, what town is this? Where am I? Who are you people?’ Every time I go away I’m like, ‘Oh, it’s like a little holiday’,’’ Flanagan cooed.
‘‘A lot of my comedian friends even say to me, ‘God, you’ve really got it worked out’ and I’m like, ‘I know, it’s great right?’... I’m having the best time.’’
Another boon is having two tour mates who know the comedian well and can offer advice when she’s not hitting the mark or having an off day, in addition to the usual duties of finding the best coffee and lunch places in town.
It also means they fall into an easy rapport and can focus on the show and having fun.
‘‘If you toured with a support act – another comedian who was going to go on and do a support slot 20minutes before your show – they’re probably really nice people and you’re a nice person and you’re going to get on. But eventually you just get under each other’s skin and the other one annoys you,’’ Flanagan said.
‘‘But when it’s your sister you can just say, ‘Leave me alone, I’m going over here for a while’ and no one gets offended. That’s the beauty.’’