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Alison Spittle
Photograph: Ayesha Ahmed

‘Camden is like a goth Disneyland’: Alison Spittle on adjusting to the comedy life in London

Almost everyone in Ireland knows Alison Spittle, and you should too. We spoke with the Westmeath comedian to see what makes her tick. (Turns out, it’s Camden. She really loves Camden.)

Written by
Katie McCabe
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Your next gig is a work in progress, what can we expect?

‘It’s about me kind of grappling with my relationship with violence, but in a funny way, because I saw some people get into a fight at aqua aerobics. If you saw it in a UFC ring, you’d be like “Grand!”, but not at a mid-tempo aqua aerobics class with about 50 pensioners. It was quite the brawl.’

So what went down? Did you try to intervene?

‘No, no, I was too busy exercising. I’m a lover not a fighter.’

You moved from Dublin to London two years ago, how has it been?

‘I am happy that I spent lockdown here. I live in Camden and it’s mad. When the puddles of sick started appearing again on my way to Aldi, it was like “Nature is healing.” You know things are going to be okay. It’s like being in Jurassic Park and seeing a fresh dinosaur poo: “It’s coming, they’re nearby!” I love living there.’

Are there any differences between Dublin and London audiences?

‘Big time. They’re more discerning in London. In Ireland, they’ll give you a bit of leeway at the start. In London, you kind of have to prove you’re funny upfront.’

What made you choose Camden?

‘Genuinely: because I’d heard of the place. Amy Winehouse loved it and if it was good enough for her… I’m not a goth, but Camden is like a goth Disneyland. I also like that people will tell you that Camden’s not good. If I tell people I live there they’ll be like, “That place was good 20 years ago, it’s a dump now.”

Catch Alison Spittle: ‘Work in Progress’ at Battersea Arts Centre this Sat, Sep 11. Pay what you can, suggested price £12. Find out more here

Speaking of Camden, did you know the area has a brand-new street festival planned?

Can’t make the gig? Find out what else is happening in London this weekend

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