British Comedy Guide
Random 8

Rachel Fairburn

Rachel Fairburn. Credit: Drew Forsyth

One random comedian, eight random questions; it's the ultimate test of funny person and fate. This week it's the turn of Rachel Fairburn, the Mancunian stand-up, recent Live At The Apollo star and enduring true crime enthusiast. Right now Rachel is touring the nation, with a title that suggests frills and spills.

"Showgirl has been my biggest tour so far and I'm absolutely loving it," says the sardonic comic. "There's nothing heavy in it, I talk a bit about how I was incredibly shy when I was younger and how I became a stand-up, but mainly it's just a fun show. There's plenty of moaning about everything from air fryers to kid's names and people seem to enjoy me when I'm complaining, so there's lots of laughs."

You'd imagine that a good few of those people are also fans of All Killa No Filla, her homicide-heavy podcast with Kiri Pritchard-McLean. Honestly, Fairburn's life would be just like Only Murders In The Building, if she ever let anyone in her building. Which is one theme of this tour show.

"I talk about not liking people staying at my house and that's fast becoming my favourite bit, as so many of the audience relate to it. I'm surprised half of my audience make it to the gig; they seem to dislike people as much as I do."

It's an ironic thing to bond over. And what else is she up to, next few months?

"I'm also working on a character-based show which I'll be previewing at Leicester Comedy Festival. It's something I've always wanted to do and I'm really excited about it."

Fair do's. Rachel Fairburn, your Random 8 await:

Rachel Fairburn. Copyright: Kayla Wren

What was your childhood career dream?

I wanted to be a jockey. I think I'd have been great at it. About three times a year I google "am I too old to become a jockey?" Sadly I am.

Who do you do a decent impression of?

I can impersonate loads of my friends and family but that's no use to anyone. I can do Jimmy Carr's laugh as well.

Is there a book or film that changed your life?

The film Poltergeist. I was off school sick when I was three and my dad was looking after me. He'd borrowed it from the video shop and had to get it back that evening so he just put it on assuming I wouldn't pay attention. I did and it scarred me for life but I also became obsessed with horror movies and ghosts.

I wouldn't go to bed on my own for years after seeing it and, just as I got over it, Ghostwatch was shown on the BBC. There's an entire generation still scared to death of that show.

Rachel Fairburn. Credit: Drew Forsyth

When were you most embarrassed?

I avoid embarrassment at all costs. I'm hyper-aware of anything that may cause me regret but the closest I've been to embarrassment is walking off stage the wrong way at Brighton Forge and having to hide behind a curtain facing a brick wall. The audience knew. I knew. They coaxed me out with a cheer. Good job they did or I'd have been happy to just die there.

Which British town should be abolished?

Buxton. I've gigged there twice and hated it. I also met some very obnoxious audience members. Won't be back. Nice water though.

Which TV show would you love to have been in - and which part?

Coronation Street. I want to be a barmaid in The Rovers. It's still a dream of mine. I've got leopard print, a Mancunian accent and loads of gold jewellery so I don't even need a costume. I'll bring my own clothes! Please let me do it!

Ever met a particularly great or awful famous person?

An actress who is now a national treasure threw a coat at me when I was a 16-year-old shop assistant because we didn't have it in her size. I won't tell you who it was because you won't be able to enjoy anything she's in anymore. I can't watch her.

What's the best thing you ever ate?

I've never had bad chippy chips. I live for chippy.

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