Oscar Brophy brings Irish comedy to Trnava: What can we expect?

21st november – a day during Irish comedy finds a temporary home in Malý Berlin. With one of the performers, Oscar Brophy, we talked about the specifics of standup from his homeland and why he chose Trnava as the next location for the show.

Why did you choose Trnava to be the place for your next event?

Because it is close to Bratislava and we would like to bring English comedy further into Slovakia. Of course, it is far away so it is like a stepping stone. I think in the future it would be cool if I say to traveling comedians that if you come to Slovakia, you can come to Bratislava, you can come to Trnava, and we can make a little circuit. We would have to make ourselves financially viable. Often comedians will come to Austria – Vienna, Salzburg, Innsbruck, and Prague, and then Bratislava is just a stop on the way. If we can make Slovakia a viable place for comedy, I think that would be cool.

You have already been here, in Malý Berlín, last May. How did you like it?

It was good, but it was weird that everyone had masks on, and it had reduced capacity, so I would like to see the show sold out. You have a nice venue and you are very cooperative and eager to have us back and have me back as well, to make new shows. That is always very nice.

I am really curious about Irish comedy. What makes Irish comedy “Irish”? 

The first word that comes to mind is “absurdity”. British comedy is more about irony, but in Ireland, I think we are more about making jokes about silly stuff. Generally, we tend to be a bit silly on stage and make more fun of the oddness of life. There are a lot of different schools. Obviously, I talk about weird stuff. Terry is also very freewheeling, he covers a lot of different topics.

Tell me please more about Terry. I read about him, that he’s the next big star and he is becoming quite popular.

Terry is already headlining basically every show he does. He is headlining in Dublin, Berlin, Prague, and Vienna, and is a very talented comedian. I met Terry 3 years ago on the stage, it was just before New Year in 2019 and we were doing a show in Limerick. I met him the first time online on Facebook, and also when I was doing shows in Bratislava I was trying to get Irish comedians to come over and he was one of them. I got him over at the same time as this other guy called Joe Rooney, who is a famous Irish comedian. He was in the Irish show “Father Ted”. Terry ended up liking Bratislava so much that he lived there for a year, and he met his fiance Jenny there. He is one of my best friends.

So you did not know him from the times you lived in Ireland?

No, we have a sort of multinational friendship. I meet him when I visit Prague, and we hang out in Ireland, like when I was there over the summer. Terry is the tour manager for “Three Bucks Left”. It’s these guys from a tv show aired in Ireland during the early 2000s called “Hardy Bucks”. They are similar to Trailer Park Boys, and they are quite famous in Ireland. Terry is managing their tours across Ireland and the UK and is even bringing them to Vienna and Germany next month at the start of December. He’s just 26 and Terry has achieved a lot. He’s very hard working and he travels loads.

So he will bring the specific Irish comedy and there will be a lot of nonsense, kind of “Kafka stuff” and things like that?

I would not say Kafka stuff, it is more about relationships, sex, Irish Republicanism and being in foreign countries. It is also about being an Irish person abroad, something I relate to as well, and going into things with an Irish attitude.

So, just to be clear, this show is for foreigners or anyone can come and anyone can relate?

Anyone can come. If we were to be in Ireland we would be performing other stuff and different references but 99 percent of my shows have been in different countries, and with a diverse audience including all sorts of people. So you do not have to be from anywhere specific to understand our humour you just have to understand English. 

Any last words, any last invites?

It is going to be great fun! Neither of us is working early the next day so I can picture us getting quite drunk after the show. If you want to have the fun of coming and seeing real live Irishmen, maybe you have only heard about us on the news, we are nice people so you can come and have the „craic” with us as we say in Ireland! 

Will you tell people how you, the regular Irishmen came to Slovakia and stayed there for 6 years?

I will definitely get into it, I will not spoil anything now, but I will get into my story and how I got here. It does not make sense really. I should not be here, but I will tell you all about it! 

Ján Janočko