Rhys is known for his incredible wit on stage, as well as his candy-coloured hair and curved cheek bones. Nominated for Best Show at last year’s Melbourne International Comedy Festival, Rhys’ show this year is called I’m Fine – which is symbolic of Rhys not wanting “people to expect so much”. However, having seen Rhys’ show and reading the show’s reviews, Rhys’ title could be not be more misleading.
Rhys didn’t think he could get more low budget than being in a “student radio studio held together with duct tape and hope”. I find myself falling in love with Rhys as the interview progresses, “I’m always trying to be funny, it’s the bane of my boyfriend’s existence.”
Rhys describes comedy as “very up and down,”and, “a bloody emotional rollercoaster”. Rhys describes growing up in Newcastle with his family as being conducive to his comedic voice, “My Mum is secretly very funny, she’s too serious- but she says something and I laugh at her.”
I talk to Rhys about his fantastic gala performance. “We were all sitting back-stage, freaked the fuck out,” I burst out with laughter at Rhys’ facial expression which depicts a man feeling genuine fear.
The discussion continues as we gaze out across the view of the city from the top of Union House, and Rhys sips the juice I bought him. Rhys describes the metamorphosis of his comedic voice, in which he developed from “A super crass comedian, to more of a gentle build up…although there are still plenty of dick stories.” Rhys tells me his best friend Joel Creasey “took all the gays” from his audience base, whereas Rhys gets “a lot of straight-couples, who come to look at me like [I’m in] a zoo”.
Rhys has an incredibly contagious sense of humour, I find myself floating for the rest of the day after our chat. I went to his show the day after this interview took place, and absolutely loved the feeling in the room as Rhys glided across the stage. Rhys’ show is a must see for anyone who wants to experience a comic at the top of his game- who’s hitting balls out of the park left right and centre.
Rhys’ show I’m Fine plays every night throughout the Melbourne International Comedy Festival at the Melbourne Town Hall. You can buy tickets here.
Listen to the podcast on The Ferg Neal Show here.