I had a phone chat with Sydney comic Aaron Chen. Every word of this is true (just kidding).
When did you get into comedy?
In high school I was extremely psychopathic and also shy, but I used to do speeches and they were funny. But I didn’t always want to be a comedian. I hated the idea. I wanted be a Hollywood superstar.
What’s the most memorable bomb you’ve had?
The worst I had was at the Hollywood Improv when I was travelling in America late last year. I was on stage and Seinfeld had just been on. I had to follow Seinfeld, which is crazy to ask, even for the best comedian, and I’m just this guy from Australia. I got up on stage and Nicholas Cage was in the audience with his uncle Francis Ford Coppola, and then Sophia Coppola joined them later on. Then Meryl Streep and like everyone was just walking in during my set, it was nuts. Then David Duchovny started talking loudly, everyone was talking over me. Then I started yelling at them saying they weren’t real celebrities or good actors, and everyone turned on me and said get out of here, you’re not a real comedian. Then Jerry Seinfeld came back on and everyone stood up and gave a round of applause. That was pretty memorable.
What do you do besides comedy?
Mainly just try to hang out. I go between my two apartments in Marrickville and Hollywood Boulevard. If it gets too much I go to London for a few weeks, travel through Berlin and stuff. Try to party, keep up with people. Tom (Cruise) and stuff, we go to church together. At the church of scientology they try to help you out a lot. It’s a very loving community.
What’s your new show about?
My new show is called piss off (just kidding). It represents two sides of one coin. “Piss off” kind of evokes a lot of negative emotion and sadness and darkness. And “just kidding” is quite light, it’s the dessert after a very difficult day. So piss off (just kidding) as one, is kind of exploring both sides.
What can the audience expect from you?
This year I’ll be telling stories and also tales.
Have you got anything else in the works?
I’m trying to raise $1000 for a movie. The idea is I have a plastic bag filled with twenty $50 notes. I’ll go around Sydney with these scripts I’ve written for two people. Then I’ll find two strangers, say a lady who works at an office and a man who’s working on construction at that time, and I’ll give them both a script and $50 each and get them to perform the script. But I need $1000, so if you could put in the article that I’m looking for a patron, that would be really helpful.
You can catch Aaron perform ‘piss off (just kidding)’ at the Sydney Comedy Festival, Wednesday 15th – Sunday 19th May at The Factory Theatre.