COLIN LANE: PRESENTS
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COLIN LANE: PRESENTS

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Lane recently submitted himself to the world of social media, just in time to promote the new show. His initiation hasn’t been easy. “I got a tweet from a girl saying, ‘Is this show going to be like the last one you did at the comedy festival and it’ll look like you only wrote it a week before the festival started?’ I said, ‘Thanks very much for that!’ No I didn’t – I didn’t actually answer it. I’m learning the rules of Twitter: engage, but only with the positive ones.”

 

In a sense, the tweet served Lane a spoonful of his own medicine. The local comic indulged in the role of armchair-critic throughout 2013, before finally developing Presents. “I was just mucking around last year and there was just a tendency creeping into my persona of sitting on the couch and just being this comedy aficionado…just looking at stuff on the TV and in the media, going  ‘That’s good, that’s bad, that’s inventive, that’s derivative.’ I was being a kind of middle-aged, couch-grump critic,” he recalls.

 

“I thought, ‘Well at some point, C.Lane, you’re going to have to put up or shut up! You can’t just sit there and be the convenor of comedy quality – you’ve actually got to put something forward yourself! The comedy festival’s coming up, you should do a show and put your money where your mouth is!’ In some ways, that’s the theme of the show,” Lane reveals. “With this show, I’ve decided to try. I’m not going to sit back and hang shit on the new version of Spicks and Specks, I’m going to actually decide to try and put something forward to be judged.”

 

Fans of Lano and Woodley – one of the nation’s most beloved double-acts, consisting of Lane and his comedy colleague Frank Woodley – might be curious as to what to expect from Lane and this solo venture. “I think there’s still a degree of buffoonery,” he reveals of his present-day stage persona. “I still adore the rampant stupidity of Lano and Woodley. I’ve never been someone who stands up and goes, ‘Oh how’s that Tony Abbott, he’s got big ears!’ I’ve never really felt qualified. I don’t feel like I’m the kind of person that stands up and goes, ‘This is how I think it is and this is how I think it should be!’

 

All in all, a sense of fun and silliness continues to define Lane’s comedy. “I’m just hopefully looking at things that are part and parcel of my life with a bit of stupidity in there as well. Sometimes that stuff is much more hilarious and satisfying for the audience,” Lane speculates. “That’s what always interested Frank and me, as well: we much preferred to run around and fall over a lot than stand there with a microphone and give witty observations about the world we live in. It was more about our naivety, the audience looking at us with affection and having fun.”

 


BY NICK MASON

 

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