The Malta Independent 17 September 2019, Tuesday

Living the dream

Tuesday, 15 January 2019, 09:05 Last update: about 9 months ago

Luqa-based, British-born, Spanish raised 29-year-old Jimmy Carter always wanted to become a stand-up comedian but lacked the nerve to make his dream a reality until Maltese Funny Business gave him his first opportunity. Fourteen months on and with dozens of stand-up comedy shows under his belt and appearances at Edinburgh’s Fringe Festival he’s the headlining act at Malta’s National Centre for Creativity, Spazju Kreattiv in Valletta as part of the Maltese Funny Business’s free stand-up comedy show on 19 January.

What are your memories of the journey you've made over the last year or so?  

It's been a hell of a ride. Paul Pennington, who I'd met through my job, set up Maltese Funny Business and offered me the chance to do a stand-up comedy course tutored by the highly experienced professional British comedian, Jay Sodagar. I must admit, I went into the course thinking I wouldn't get much out of it but when it all ended, my God had my eyes been opened. I suddenly understood that it's not by luck that stand-up comedians are funny, there's a whole method behind the performance and I was raring to go. There's no replacement for experience and I feel very lucky to have had the chance to go on and learn and grow through the shows I've done so far in Marsascala, Luqa, Bugibba, St Julian's, Valletta and Edinburgh.

 

Maltese Funny Business prides itself on providing new local comics with the chance to perform and learn from highly experienced UK/US professional comedians, writers and directors. What impact has this approach had on your performance capabilities? 

Every one of the acts that have come over to Malta to perform has been so generous with their support and feedback. I have learnt so much which has really enhanced both my performances and outlook on life. I went from being this stage-shy guy feeling belittled to actually looking forward to being on stage and sharing my stories with the audience.     

 

How do you balance work and writing/performing comedy? 

It isn't easy! But luckily, I have very supportive colleagues and management who actively encourage me to keep going. It's been an essential pillar in my development as an artist and for that, I am very grateful. I always joke with Maltese Funny Business creator, Paul Pennington, that the reason I write my material the night before a show is down to how busy I am at work, but between us two... I don't think he buys it!

 

You've been living and working in Malta now for 5 years - what does the country mean to you? 

Malta is amazing and I love this stunning country. It combines the best things from my two countries. Here, I can enjoy the familiarity of British influence alongside the beautiful Mediterranean lifestyle so predominant in Spain. Malta plays a big role in my comedy as I can relate to a lot of the day-to-day quirks which so many ex-pats find tough to get their heads around.

 

There are rumours you're working on some ideas for online TV and radio?  

I am developing a couple of new concepts to present to the Maltese public. It is still at an embryonic stage so I don't want to say too much other than "watch this space!"

 


Free tickets for Maltese Funny Business's show at St James Cavalier's Studio B in Valletta on 19 January at 8.30pm are available via www.kreattivita.org/en/event/maltese-funny-business-standup-comedy-night-jimmy-carter or by phoning the Spazju Kreattiv Box Office on 2122 3200


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