By Katerina Robinson
When I first decided I wanted to try stand-up comedy a lot of people were very shocked. I am definitely not the loudest person in the room, naturally I’m pretty quiet when I first meet people. At the time I wasn’t particularly confident in my image, I wasn’t getting many acting jobs, I’d been on a string of disastrous dates and I wasn’t really sure where my life was going. I enjoyed comedy and knew I loved being on stage, so I thought maybe stand up would be a good route for confidence building and to be able to share all my stories in a light and humorous way. I have been doing stand up comedy for a year and half now and I’ve definitely evolved both in my work and in me as a person.
I mainly talk about dating disasters, sex stories and chat up lines during my sets and I’ve found from being on the circuit, often being on all male line-ups or being 1 of a few women performing that people sometimes get shocked and taken back by a young woman speaking so openly about sex. I think sex can still be quite a taboo subject and when I first started doing stand up I almost felt like I had to apologize for discussing something so sacred.
However, the more I’ve grown as a person and become more confident I have definitely adopted a more “unapologetic” attitude. I actually find discussing dating and sex on a stage very liberating and empowering. A woman should never apologize for enjoying sex or being sexually confident. I think as a creative it’s really important to create work you’re passionate about and express yourself they way you wish to express, not what society thinks is the way a woman “should” behave.
Following from stand up comedy I started to meet other female comedians on the circuit who had similar views. I started performing and writing comedy sketches with another likeminded female comedian called Kat Ronson. We discuss every aspect of womanhood through funny, relatable sketches and we’ve both had similar experiences working in the entertainment industry.
We show things that women want to talk about – in groups we LOVE talking about sex, penis sizes, techniques. It all happens, yet we rarely see a voice through comedy that really delves in to this. We aren’t discussing our periods and our laser hair removal treatments. Publicly, women still feel pressure to be lady-like, but through our sketches we have definitely created a fresh, feisty voice for women. We have recently filmed a sketch about female comedians and our experiences on the circuit, which will be releasing soon. You can watch our most recent 8 minute sketch below, called “How to be a Hoe”.
I often get messages on social media saying things like “you post very provocative pictures online, are you a sexy woman or are you a comedian because you can’t be both” My answer to that is why the hell not?! Why can’t I dress sexy and also be funny? The one thing I love and have found with comedy is that there are no rules, there are no “you can’t” because in comedy anything goes! I have found a way to express myself in a humorous way and I am so grateful to have met lots of other female creatives on the way. I am definitely excited for what’s to come and the future for funny ladies.
Katerina is an actress and stand-up comedian from Greek-Cypriot/English descent. She trained in acting at The Italia Conti Academy of Theatre Arts and she is a member of the Soho Young Theatre Company in stand-up comedy. Katerina will be playing “Maria” in How to Save a Life- a dark comedy about a young woman’s journey through cervical cancer, which will be showing at Soho Theatre on 20th November.