A lucky audience were treated to eavesdropping on Eddie Izzard in conversation with Simon Amstell on Friday at the Apple store on Regent Street. Hosting the store’s first ever comedy gig, following an amazing run of live bands in the shop, Simon and Eddie made a great combination. The audience, many of whom had queued round the block to get into the free show, were in the palm of their hands right from the duo’s entrance - which they tried several times to make sure it was right.
The audience were there to have fun, the atmosphere was very relaxed and subject matter predictably random, ranging from bees to Nazis. Eddie’s Europhile status was mentioned early - claiming to be as ever, “positive on the European thingybaby”, and even mentioning that he’s considering standing for some kind of European position in the next few years - Eddie Izzard MEP would be fun! He ticked boxes on Britishness with love for Python and knowledge of Custard Cream eating techniques and claimed “I’ll always be a Londoner”. But he makes no bones about his love of the US too - “My heart is European, my head is American. I would’ve been on the boats” - professing his enthusiasm for their can do attitude and sense of adventure.
The love of adventure was mentioned in an old theme of being an action transvestite, when responding to an audience question he described his desire to be a "21st century tranny boy - like Carrie Ann Moss in The Matrix". On the realities of being a transvestite, he talked about the day he told his Dad - after football, over sausage, egg and chips (“A standard Izzard meal”) in the pub. Even though people said “You can’t tell your Dad - your Dad’ll explode”; it all turned out groovy apparently. Although dressed in strictly male attire, he covered the difficulty of finding good heels for stand up - the ones seen in his Dress to Kill DVD are the best to date.
Other topics covered everything from when French farting legend Le Petamine is coming to iTunes, his own “spiritual atheism” and how “in the US you can’t get elected without a faith, and in the UK you can’t get elected with one”, and on showbusiness, that “the London Machine is like the Hollywood Machine and the New York Machine though not as sexy sounding!”.It was a class act from a national treasure, great to see him in London again after his Stripped season. The iTunes store worked well as a comedy venue, and Simon and Eddie made a great pairing - it was definitely a smiling audience who left the show.
Eddie’s full DVD back catalogue is now available on iTunes and an audio recording of Eddie’s set will be available to download from iTunes in the next few days.
Image courtesy of Nick J Webb's Flickr photostream under the Creative Commons licence.