Luke Nowell ready to play the clown in his 2016 Sydney Comedy Festival show pLight

Funny guy: Bexley North comedian Luke Nowell. Tickets for pLight are available through
Funny guy: Bexley North comedian Luke Nowell. Tickets for pLight are available through

Many people in life lack the courage or endeavour to chase their dreams – but not Luke Nowell.

The Bexley North comedian is bringing his physical comedy show pLight to the Sydney Comedy Festival in May.

The 30-year-old was selected as a best emerging comedian at last year’s festival for his acclaimed show The Weaning of Life.

Speaking to The Leader from France where he is studying under master clown Philippe Gaulier, Nowell gave an insight into his show, following his heart and what makes a comedian funny.

The Leader: How did you get into comedy?

Luke Nowell: About five years ago I decided that my life required a reset and so I promised myself that I would change my life and follow my passion. For me, this was around the area of entertaining, communicating, acting and comedy. The best lead seemed to be to join an improvisation class and so I took my first improvisation one-week intensive class.

TL: How is your study going in France?

LN: I’m absolutely loving my time at Ecole Philippe Gaulier, a theatre and clown school based just outside Paris. After experiencing some clown work in Sydney I knew that this art was very close to me as a person. Studying with Gaulier is unlike anything I’ve done before and stretches you in ways that you couldn’t imagine. 

Luke Nowell

Luke Nowell

TL: Can you tell us a little bit about pLight?

LN: My vision for pLight is based on an exploration of what it means to be human and of life’s absurdities. This show has been a licence to step into the world of my dreams and, to put simply, explore the things in life that make me laugh. The show helps us experience life and find pleasure in the present moment.

It seems to tap into something that we all have in common as human beings.

Luke Nowell

TL: Being a local, what does it mean to you to be performing at the Sydney Comedy Festival?

LN: It’s been really uplifting that my style of comedy has been noticed and accepted with open arms. People seem to connect with what I’m doing. I really try to offer something completely different and fresh at the festival. So to be recognised as an emerging comedian last year encourages me to keep creating – it tells me that I’m onto something.

TL: What makes a good comedian?

LN: I’d say that connecting with the audience is always the most important thing and the funny ideas come second. It’s personality before gag. You want to help the audience to dream, even through idiocy. I think this might be why I am funny, because I like to observe life and simply make fun of it and make fun of myself. You can never take yourself too seriously.

  • pLight is playing at the Factory Theatre in Marrickville on May 3, 5 and 7.


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