Stephen K Amos doesn’t strike you as one of life’s awkward customers. But that’s exactly what he is aiming to be in his new touring show, Welcome To My World.

“Even in this day and age, we still don’t like to talk about things like race and sexuality or how much money you earn, all those awkward dinner party conversation fillers.

"There’s a certain weirdness that can spark up in those areas and that gives me a springboard to be awkward within the show and ask the audience the awkward, challenging questions.“

World affairs is something that’s currently playing on Amos’ mind and he’s not going to shy away from getting a measure of his crowd’s opinion on prickly contemporary issues.

“Bearing in mind what’s going on with Russia at the moment, where they’re going into Ukraine and grabbing bits of a country that was once theirs, I wonder why the world is reacting the way it has?" 

Issues a little closer to home are also stretching Amos’ patience, and he’ll be posing more tough questions about the current political landscape in Britain.

“At the recent European elections, there was a move to the far right. Over here, it seemed like UKIP was the only party running in the elections. On TV, radio and in print, it was all about them. And all I can gather from their policies is that they have views on immigration and Europe, and nothing else. Yet people have rushed to make this protest vote.“

All of which sounds rather serious and somewhat un-Amos like. But don’t worry, the London comic knows full well how to play to his strengths.

“Ultimately, my main focus is that they’ve got to laugh. The people who come to my shows are, generally speaking, the converted, so there’s no point in me just telling them about race and politics and getting all this applause, that’s just pointless. So I’m giving them the jokes and getting it down to a very basic level.”

Since he arrived on the comedy scene back in 2001, Amos has had no problem with facilitating the sound of laughter in every room he’s appeared in. He’s had a string of acclaimed Edinburgh Fringe stand-up shows such as All of Me and Find The Funny, acted on the West End alongside Christian Slater and Frances Barber in One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest, had his own entertainment shows on TV and radio, and presented Batty Man, a BAFTA-nominated documentary for Channel 4.

But like many UK acts who have conquered their own country, eyes naturally turn to the US.

“One of the main things is to put yourself out there and get yourself known; my goal is to get onto the late night comedy shows because they have yet to see a black British comic on there.”

Stephen K Amos: Welcome to My World is at artsdepot, Tally Ho Corner, Nether Street, North Finchley, on Friday, February 6 at 8pm. Details: 020 8369 5454, Brian Donaldson 


Brian Donaldson