Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2014 interview: Italian comedian Francesco de Carlo
'I aim to lose my tan, improve my English and inflate my belly with your beer’
This article is from 2014.
By the close of the festival, the ‘expressive, surreal and slightly Mediterranean’ Francesco de Carlo aims to ‘lose my tan, improve my English and inflate my belly with your beer’. As part of a group of comedians who’ve brought stand-up to Comedy Central in Italy and established a touring circuit there, he’s content performing in the ad hoc space of the Pleasance. ‘In Italy, we do stand-up in random places because we don’t have clubs,’ he laments. ‘In the beginning I did shows in restaurants while people were eating. I often felt a little unwanted!’
Restricting his allusions to Silvio Berlusconi (‘there’s only three or four jokes about him in the show: I promise!’), de Carlo has nevertheless found it ‘impossible not to touch on Italian vices. However, 90% of the show is about politics, society, religion, sex, drugs, alcohol and other universal subjects.’
He admits that comedy in a second language is hard, but harder still is answering questions from inane journalists who confuse him with London mob boss Francesco Di Carlo, aka Frankie the Strangler. ‘You got me! I just want to start a brand new life. I’m totally knackered right now. And I don’t even know what “knackered” means.’
Francesco de Carlo: Italians Do it Later, Pleasance Courtyard, 556 6550, 2–25 Aug (not 11), 10.50pm, £8–£10.50 (£7–£9.50). Previews 30 Jul–1 Aug, £6.