Dave Gorman

Dave Gorman

Date of birth: 02-03-1971
Dave Gorman started stand-up in 1990, when still a teenager, after dropping out of his mathematics course at Manchester University. But it took five years for him to start gaining recognition, hosting both the Comedy Zone showcase at the Edinburgh Fringe and appearing on Granada's Stand-up Show in 1995. Writing work began to come in, and he worked on Jenny Eclair Squats, The Fast Show and the Mrs Merton Show.

In 1998, he performed his first solo show, Reasons To Be Cheerful, deconstructing the lyrics of the Ian Dury song, which he followed the next year with Better World, in which he asked local newspaper readers how he could improve the world, then acted n their suggestions. This documentary-style show came into its own in 2000's Are You Dave Gorman? in which, egged on by flatmate Danny Wallace, he travelled the world to try to find 52 namesakes.

Are You Dave Gorman? was nominated for the Perrier award, and won the HBO Comedy Jury Award for Best One Person Show at the US Comedy Arts Festival in Aspen Colorado. It was subsequently made into a BBC Two series, The Dave Gorman Collection, and a successful book.

His second TV series, also broadcast on BBC Two, was Dave Gorman's Important Astrology Experiment, a cod-scientific test to see if he could improve his love, health, and wealth over six episodes if he followed his horoscopes. His twin brother Nick, completely ignored the astrologers, so acted as a control.

In 2003, he embarked on another bizarre quest; this time tracking down people responsible for Googlewhacks - web pages that contain a unique pairing of words, so they are the only result returned when you type the phrase into the search engine. The show, which virtually drove him to a nervous breakdown, started at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival, transferred to Edinburgh and a UK tour, and again spawned a bestselling book as well as a live DVD.

Since 2005, Gorman has also hosted the Radio 4 show Genius, in which members of the public submit their brilliant ideas to be put to the test, which transferred to BBC Two in 2009. He has also starred in Rob Brydon's Annually Retentive, a show showing a behind-the-scenes view of a fictional comedy panel game, as himself.

In 2007, he released his documentary feature film, America Unchained, in which he tried to cross America without using chain restaurants, hotels or gas stations. Again, a book accompanied the film.

In 2009, he announced a return to more traditional stand-up - but cycling between the 32 venues in his UK tour.

Read More

Baddish news! Dave Gorman axes Modern Life Is Goodish

Comic says show is too demanding

Dave Gorman is to bring Modern Life Is Goodish to an end,  because the stress of compiling the shows is too demanding.

The comic says he frequently works 10am to 5am putting the show together, and frequently round-the-clock, adding: ‘It’s simply not possible to keep doing that without making yourself ill.’ Indeed, he fainted on stage while recording one episode in the first series.

In a long post on his website he admits that in many ways making  five series of the show has been a dream job, and that to complain about the demands of coming up with new material when that is part of that job might seem churlish. But it has taken too heavy a toll.

‘Creating 36 telly-hours in the space of five years is something I'm hugely proud of,’ he said. ‘There aren't many comics that will get that opportunity. And I like to think I respected the opportunity - and the audience - and always gave my all to it.

‘It's hard to let go of such a wonderful opportunity. I know that if I wanted to make more I could. But I don't want to do it half-cocked. And I don't want to make myself ill doing it either. And I want to do other things too. I want to do more live work.

Gorman, who has a two-year-old son, Eric, has already announced a 2018 tour, and said that ‘not working 100-plus hours a week is probably going to feel quite nice after five years of crazy. So it's probably best to leave it there.’

The comic also thanked broadcaster Dave for allowing such a pure, long-form version of stand-up on TV  – ‘not stand-up and sketches. Not stand-up and anything else. Not a package of discreet bits that could be edited together in a different order and make just as much sense’ – saying that the nuances and pacing of longer shows are what comedy is all about, but which are rarely reflected on TV.

He also explained: 'The channel and I are actively looking for ways of working together in the future.'

The final episode in the fifth and final series of Modern Life Is Goodish airs tomorrow  at 10pm.

CORRECTION: This article was amended soon after publication as it incorrectly stated that Gorman collapsed during filming of the fifth season, when it was actually during the first.

Read More

Published: 18 Dec 2017

Goodish news! | Gorman to return for two more Dave series

Goodish news!

Dave Gorman is to make two more series of his stand-up…

Absolutely sacked

Comedian and accordionist Martin White has been axed…

The player

Dave Gorman has written a new book based around playing…

Skip to page


We see you are using AdBlocker software. Chortle relies on advertisers to fund this website so it’s free for you, so we would ask that you disable it for this site. Our ads are non-intrusive and relevant. Help keep Chortle viable.