Brendon Burns

Brendon Burns

Australian Brendon Burns has been performing comedy since the early Nineties and is known for his aggressive stage presence and controversial material.

He briefly hosted the 11 O'Clock Show and even more briefly the ITV2 spin-off show I’m A Celebrity, Get Me Out Of Here Now!, walking off after just three shows.

However it is live – and especially in his solo shows – where he has forged a reputation, with six live CDs to his name. He first appeared at the Edinburgh Fringe in 1996, hosting the Comedy Zone showcase of new acts, and performing in his debut solo show 6pm Time To Get Up For Work. He has returned to the Fringe every year since, except for 1999, and in 2007 won its top prize, the if.comedy award,.

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Brendon Burns: I'm quitting stand-up

'It's time I did something else' says former Edinburgh Comedy Award winner

Former Edinburgh Comedy Award winner Brendon Burns has announced that he’s quitting stand-up.

The comic admitted that he is finding club sets to simplistic and that life on the road is gruelling. But he said there’s no bitterness to his decision, rather a time to move on to other things.

‘This isn’t a Hannah Gadsby "fuck you you never loved me" thing,’ he told listeners to his Dumb White Guy podcast – which is also coming to an end after 245 episodes.

Admitting that it was always his childhood dream to be a stand-up, he said: ‘I’ve devoted my life to too many things that I’ve loved, [but] they haven’t really loved me back very much for the last few years.

‘By the way, this isn’t sad, or bitter-sweet. I’m thrilled to be heading into this new chapter. Chapter! Oh for fuck’s sake! Shut the fuck up Brendon!’

From Perth in Western Australia, Burns started comedy on the UK circuit in the 1990s, making his Edinburgh debut in 1996, and performing almost every year since. In 2007, he won the Fringe’s top prize, then called the if.comedy award, for his show So I Suppose This Is Offensive Now.

It followed an acclaimed trilogy, Burnsy versus Brendon, which examined his mental state, culminating in his frank description of his breakdown.

On TV he appeared on The 11 O'Clock Show, ITV2's Comedy Cuts and hosting the reality show spin-off I'm a Celebrity...Get Me Out of Here! NOW!, quitting the latter after just three episodes. A keen wrestling fan, he has a cameo in the Stephen Merchant/Dwayne Johnson film Fighting with My Family.

But it is as a live performer that he made his reputation – an arena the 48-year-old is now stepping back from.

Speaking to his Dumb White Guy listeners, he said: ‘Listen, guys, little announcement…. next week’s episodes will  be probably – actually it is, just go with it – it will be the final Dumb White Guy.

‘I’m wrapping this up, it’s been great fun, and I’ll tell you more next week as to why… It’s expensive and it eats up too much of [producer Toby Riding] and my time. It’s time I did something else… We can’t just do this for free anymore.’

‘I’m also winding up being a stand-up as well. It’s time I did something else with this skill set.’

He said he would perform a ‘last few gigs here and there’, insisting they would not be ‘sad affairs’ as: ‘I’d like to go out with a smile on my face’.

Burns was tight-lipped about what he was doing next, saying cryptically: ‘I’m not quitting - but I am stopping’ and that he would be ‘pursuing a career in the same vein’.

He said his mystery new direction was ‘always kind of what was next, but I was waiting for too long for someone to discover it for me’.

‘I’ll go into it more next week,’ he added. ‘I’m not retiring at all, but I think there’s something else I’ve got to offer.’

 ‘Already it’s been a massive weight off. I’m so much happier. I’m laughing my fucking ass off now. I’m just not sure I need that public validation any more. I don’t think I enjoy that public validation. I’m not even sure I enjoy being the centre of attention all that much.

‘It’s not the gruelling road. It was always my boyhood dream to be a stand-up comedian. And I got pretty good at it. It give me everything it possible could, but it was kind of diminishing returns.’

He added that he found the ten- to 20-minute sets of the circuit too limiting. 

‘It’s going to sound douche-y, but what works is too simplistic for me, it just is. The art of purest joke-telling comedy is to simplify thing and you may have noticed I like to complicate things!’

Burns said his Dumb White Guy archive would remain available on his Patreon page.

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Published: 4 Jul 2019

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Past Shows

Edinburgh Fringe 2002

Brendon Burns: Thinking Man's Idiot


Edinburgh Fringe 2003

Brendon Burns: Not For Everyone


Edinburgh Fringe 2004

Brendon Burns: Burnsy vs Brendon


Edinburgh Fringe 2006

Brendon Burns: Sober Not Clean


Edinburgh Fringe 2011

Wrestling


Edinburgh Fringe 2012

Brendon Burns: Home Stretch Baby!


Melbourne 2009

Brendon Burns Returns


Misc live shows

Pimm's Summerfest


Agent

Marlene Zwickler & Associates
Contact by email
2 Belgrave Place
EH4 3AN
Office: 0131 343 3030

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