'Stand-up bored me'

Why Lee's happy off the circuit

Stewart Lee has admitted he used to get so bored with stand-up that he would deliberately disrupt his routine - just for the thrill getting it back on track.

He came close to quitting performing because, after 14 years on the circuit, it presented no new challenges.

"I'd deliberately throw the show," he told London's Time out magazine, "I'd sabotage myself, just for the fun of working it round again."

"I'd reached a stage where I was never nervous nor particularly happy when I'd finished the show. I always felt safe"

However, he says his interest was revivied by his latest show Pea Green Boat, which is more storytelling than traditional stand-up. And working on Jerry Springer: The Opera, which opens at the National Theatre this spring, also came as a relief from the stand-up circuit.

Pea Green Boat, loosely based around the life and work of Edward Lear, is at the Battersea Arts Centre for the next three weekends.

Published: 29 Jan 2003

Today's comedy-on demand picks

ANGRY QUIZ GUY

Nick Helm plays the short-tempered titular character in this new series of comedy shorts based on the ubiquitous Zoom quiz, with comics including Rachel Stubbings, Richard Soames, Katie Pritchard and Briony Redman playing the competitors..

Click for more suggestions

... including the new sketch comedy podcast Next Level Sketch and classic movie Some Like It Hot, which is on iPlayer for this week only.

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