The Kaje talks science to stand up with Shazia Mirza

Mirza’s career is rooted in comedy but also spans T.V, radio, theatre and film. With Mirza out on the road a the moment, The Kaje  decided to catch up with her and find out exactly how a science teacher turned into a stand up…

You started out as a science teacher, how did you switch to comedy?

I didn’t switch to comedy overnight. I started doing comedy while I was still teaching. I just did open spots every night in dingy clubs and rooms above pubs- while I was still teaching which was really tiring. Sometimes I’d drive to Manchester and back on the same night and then go to school the next day to teach. I nearly fell asleep in a few lessons, Bunsen burners were blazing and kids were escaping through the windows. That’s when I knew it was time to go.

What influences you both in life and in your comedy?

My comedy comes from my life. And there’s always things to talk about. If I run out of things to say I just go home for the weekend and spend some time with my parents.

It says on your website that you could have had the chance to live a life on Bishop’s Avenue etc, can you tell us some more about that?

I really need to update my webpage. What I was saying is that I could have married a rich man at 21, and had a life of shopping, holidays, and mindless sex with a man I don’t love who’d probably cheat on me the minute he sees a stray hair on my upper lip. But instead I chose to follow my dream of being on stage, even though this was the harder and less lucrative option.

Describe your own style?

Autobiographical, sometimes silly sometimes just a pack of lies. But I love to take the piss out of my parents. Revenge- They should have let me have boyfriends as a teenager!

Can you think of some standout moments from your career?

Meeting The Queen, meeting Brian May. Playing the Royal Albert Hall.

Do you do anything before performing?

Sit in silence, I rarely talk to anyone, and I always go through my set.

What are your favourite things to do during the performance?

Banter with the audience. I love to know who’s out there and know about their life.

What’s next for you?

I will be on The Wright stuff on 6th- 10th February Channel 5  9-11am. I will also be on tour later on in the year all tour dates will be on my website soon.

Can you tell us one piece of trivia about yourself?

I can’t stop picking my nose. I do it all the time in every situation. It’s disgusting and embarrassing.

Follow Shazia Mirza …
Twitter: @shaziamirza1

Words: Eleni Kypridemos
Photographs: Martin Twomey


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