An Interview with Mick Cohen-Carroll
Mr Cohen-Carroll is the quintessential cerebral entertainer & the Fringe & the Mumble are very happy to have him here in Edinburgh…
Hello Mick, so where ya from & where ya at, geographically speaking?
Mick: Hi Emily! GeographicalIy speaking, I live in Chicago, though I grew up in Paris. Where I’m at mentally though, I’m not sure.
When did you first develop a passion for theatre?
Mick: When I first started doing improv classes in Paris, which led to some physical theater work.
Can you tell us about your physical theater experience in France?
Mick: Yes, I developed an interest in slapstick, mime, mask and being a clown. Expressing with just your body can more powerful or emotional and you don’t have to rely on words.
What for you makes a good piece of theatre?
Mick: Something that makes you think, dream, or inspires you.
I’ve heard you pontificate upon the absurd nature of humor; can you summarize your thoughts for us?
Mick: Here’s an equasion:
(SURPRISE + DISCOMFORT) x TRAGEDY + TIME = HUMOR
PERSPECTIVE – SCHADENFREUDE x HIGH STAKES = HUMOR
HUMOR + HUMOR = 2HUMOR
2HUMOR = ((SURPRISE + DISCOMFORT) x TRAGEDY + TIME) + (PERSPECTIVE – SCHADENFREUDE x HIGH STAKES )= TOO ABSURD
HUMOR = ABSURD
You seem to be something of a comedic philosopher, so can you tell us we laugh at all and what is the brain’s role in it?
Mick: At the end of the day, it’s interesting to think about the why. Our collective experiences can definitely influence whether we find things funny. Things in our past, the types of friends we have. But I believe there also exists a visceral response to some things beyond nature, conditioning or culture. Some things, like physical humor are universally appreciated, and my desire with Me Talking Mostly is to explore that sense of universality. I believe I try to that with all my work.
Can you tell us about Pinky Swear?
Mick: Yes! Pinky Swear is my guitar and comedy duo with my friend Joshua. A “Very Best of Pinky Swear” album will be out shortly.
What does Mick Cohen-Carroll like to do when he’s not being, well, dramatic?
Mick: Well, good question. Love running, playing guitar, it’s important to take care of yourself and to “treat yo self”.
You are bringing your solo show, ME TALKING MOSTLY, to this year’s Fringe; can you tell us about it?
Mick: I did this show in Chicago and New York already and it’s gone really well! I mess around with the audience quite a bit and create an interactive experience through storytelling, improv, music, poetry all surrounding the theme of modern comedy and audience expectations.
What do you hope an audience member will take away from watching Me Talking Mostly, on what levels do you want to connect with them?
Mick: I’m hoping to connect on an intellectual and emotional level, that they take away a sense that it’s ok to be break the rules and to question.
You’ve got 20 seconds to sell the show in an Edinburgh street….?
Mick: Absurd Chicago humorist makes you laugh, cry and question the world. Also, get ROCK HARD ABS!!! for this show will make you laugh so much, you’ll strengthen your core.
What will you be doing after the Fringe?
Mick: I will either go on tour with the show or get my PhD in applied mathematics. Don’t know which yet.
Paradise in The Vault – The Annexe
Aug 4-11, 13-18 (20.10)