Interview - Heath McIvor and Randy

The purple-faced puppet is clean, sober and ready to entertain


This article is from 2011.

Interview - Randy, with the help of pal, colleague and sponsor Heath McIvor

What were the circumstances behind your first alcoholic drink?
After 32 hours in labour I was exhausted and absolutely furious about being wrenched from my sac of amniotic fluid. Only a scotch would do.

Name a famous puppet that could drink you under the table?
I once split a barrel of moonshine with Janice, the guitarist from Dr Teeth and the Electric Mayhem. She drove me to the hospital that night. Incredible woman.

What’s your favourite story about Edinburgh?
When Sir James Douglas was preparing to leave Edinburgh and take the embalmed heart of Robert the Bruce on a final crusade to the Holy Land, he asked his younger brother Hugh the Dull to oversee the provisions for the trip. In doing so, Hugh the Dull inadvertently created the first ever battered Mars Bar.

What’s your least favourite thing about Edinburgh?
Hugh the Dull.

How do you keep your skin so purple?
Self harm.

Who or what was your first love?
Alex Kid in Miracle World on Sega Master System Two.

If you hadn’t been a stage performer, what would you have been?
A quilt.

What’s the worst job you’ve ever had?
I spent three months opening tins of mushy peas for Nigella Lawson’s father, Nigel Lawson, during his time as Chancellor of the Exchequer in Margaret Thatcher’s cabinet. Nearly killed me.

What’s the first thing you do when you wake up every day?
Unzip the suitcase. It can get a little ripe in there overnight.

If Disney rang you up tomorrow to offer you a life-changing contract, would you take it?
If that life-changing contract involved international espionage and a lot of base-jumping from helicopters to capture and reanimate the cryogenically frozen head of Walt Disney, then yes. For anything else I would pass it on to my pal Sammy J because working for Disney is on his bucket list.

What sport(s) do you have an aptitude for?
I once made the state finals in the 100-yard sit. I think I could have gone all the way with it but I tore my latissimus dorsi in a vinyl beanbag.

Had a tabloid newspaper ever hacked into your phone, what is the most shocking thing they would have heard?
Every evening at six I put in a call to the Bureau of Meteorology to check for severe weather warnings. I would really rather that was kept well out of the public domain; no doubt the tabloids would have a field day with that shit.

What’s the last thing you do before you go to sleep?
Wake up. It’s quite tiresome.

What’s your favourite film?
The Cameraman. The only truly great film Buster Keaton did with MGM before they knifed him unapologetically in the back.

Do you dream in purple?
Sometimes. I have this reoccurring dream where I’m late for an appointment with a myotherapist and I get held up at the traffic lights while a man in a moose costume cleans my windscreen with a duck. The duck is often wearing a purple necktie.

When you’re in Edinburgh this August, which other shows will you go to see?
Very funny. My eyeballs aren’t real.

Were you to suddenly develop actual real eyeballs, which shows would you be gagging to see?
I’ve always found the term ‘gagging’ in the context of being enthusiastic about something quite odd. I’m choking to see Sammy J in Potentially; retching to see Pete Firman in Jiggery Pokery; heaving to see The Suitcase Royale in Zombatland; puking to see The Hermitude of Angus, Ecstatic; and sticking my fingers down my throat to see Hannibal Buress.

If you were to programme your own festival, what three things would it have to include?
A Who Framed Roger Rabbit-themed carousel, a hot chip stand and a three-hour set from seminal stoner rock legends Kyuss.

What’s in your rider?

Anti-inflamatory haemorrhoid medicine and a small jug of filtered tap water.

A Clockwork Orange or Pink Flamingos?

A Clockwork Orange. No one likes Pink Flamingos these days, they’re a living example of what would have happened if evolution stopped in the 80s.

What’s your favourite first line to a novel?

It’s from Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman: ‘The night before he went to London, Richard Mayhew was not enjoying himself.’ After I’ve read that much, I’m entirely incapable doing anything other than reading the rest of the book.

And finally, who are your comedy heroes?

Angry people in queues, old men eating porridge, snow monkeys in thermal springs: all the classics.

Randy is Sober, Udderbelly’s Pasture, 0844 545 8252, 6–29 Aug (not 15), 9.10pm, £10–£12 (£9–£11). Previews until 5 Aug, £7; Sammy J and Randy: Ricketts Lane, Udderbelly’s Pasture, 0844 545 8252, 6–29 Aug (not 15), 6pm, £12.50–£14 (£11.50–£13). Previews until 5 Aug, £7.50.

This article is from 2011.

Sammy J and Randy: Ricketts Lane

  • 4 stars

Winner of Best Show at the 2010 Melbourne International Comedy Festival and following sell-out shows at the Sydney Opera House, this hilarious tale of domestic misadventure makes its UK debut at the 2011 Edinburgh Fringe. Sammy J and Randy are housemates and best friends – but when Sammy’s legal work uncovers a skeleton…

Randy is Sober

  • 4 stars

From the award-winning puppeteer and co-creator of Sammy J in the Forest of Dreams comes an all-new comedy show starring Randy, the felt-faced misanthrope. ‘Randy proves that performers made of foam can give their human counterparts a run for their money’ (List). Heath McIvor's last solo show, ‘Randy's Postcards From…

Elsewhere on the web


Post a comment