Interview: Susie Youssef

16 March 2017

Susie Youssef vomited before and after her first ever stand-up comedy gig.  Near crippling anxiety isn’t usually a trait many would ascribe to a successful comedian. Susie, however, has overcome her anxiety by becoming one of Australia’s most promising up and coming comedians.

Susie grew up with five sisters in a household where she viewed herself as “the least funny of the bunch”.  Susie’s family has been interwoven into her comedy since she started, citing her mother as being a big influence on her own comedic trajectory. She beams with pride when discussing her loved ones.

Susie talks about the trials and tribulations of going to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, the biggest comedy festival in the world. Sharing a house with comedic names such as Tom Ballard, David O’Doherty, Anne Edmonds and others. I become intrigued about the ‘comedy frat house’. “Yeah it’s a bit like a comedy frat house…if members of the comedy frat house drank herbal tea and went to bed before 10,” Susie’s dry-wit convulses me into laugher.

Having started in sketch comedy, Susie had made stand up her own. “I see stand-up comedy as a very cathartic process- you’re really putting your own self out there, whereas in sketch comedy you’re playing a character, that self-introspection is dually what makes stand-up so horribly scary and beautiful at the same time.” I allow Susie to go on a stream of consciousness, as it quickly becomes apparent that her love of comedy will not succumb to my attempted interjections. The interview concludes with my face sore from smiling, Susie has a contagious passion for making people laugh.

Susie’s show at this year’s Melbourne International Comedy Festival, ‘Behave Youssef’ is a must see for anyone who loves to be swept away by someone overcoming the odds in pursuit of what is held dearest to their heart.

Susie Youssef will perform Behave Youssef from March 30 April 23 at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival. Tickets: $24–$28 and can be purchase at

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