Loyiso Gola is a comedian from South Africa who’s got a very impressive resume. He was the co-creator and anchor for a television series Late Night News with Loyiso Gola. on e.tv and eNCA. Along with other television and film appearances he’s been a two time Emmy nominee. In 2014 he won the Savanna SA Comic of the year award. Loyiso is in the midst of bringing his latest one man show Unlearning to the world. He will be appearing at both the Ethnic show and Netflix Specials Live at this year’s Just For Laughs Festival.
Ron : Hello Loyiso, How are you?
Loyiso : Fine how are you?
Ron : I’m good, thanks. I wanted to say I saw the Ethnic Show last night and enjoyed it.
Loyiso : Thank you. I’m a very good comedian (Laughing).
Ron : You are doing double duty this year. You’ve got the Ethnic Show and Netflix specials Live. Is it going to be the same material or are you mixing it up?
Loyiso : It’s going to be slightly different material. it’s a very different format from the Ethnic show so I have to figure out how to stretch out the material to give the best performance. I’ll figure it out. I’m a clever guy.
Ron : I think it’s a good idea for you to be doing two different shows. This way people can see more and different material from you.
Loyiso : As for now I kind of have a strong idea of what I want to do for Netflix. I’m about 70% there so I’ll figure out how to align the material and make it all work.
Ron : For those who are going to the Ethnic Show what can they expect from your portion of the show?
Loyiso : I talk about myself. I talk about South Africa. I talk about my experiences, pretty much everything. I talk about a wide spectrum of things. I’ve done shows that are an hour long. I’ve done 30 minutes. So in terms of material I got a lot. I’m always juggling what to put on stage, what to go for and what not to. I’ve been doing stand up since I was 17 so I just have stuff.
Ron : You’ve been here before. What is it that you like about Montreal?
Loyiso : It’s a very cool city. I find it’s very Euro-Centric. It’s like Europe in a different place. It’s very French and I’ve never experienced that in this part of the world so it’s very interesting. The food is great. The architecture is great. The people are way friendlier than the people in London or New York.
Ron : The last time you were here you did a show with Sugar Sammy, how was it?
Loyiso : Yeah I did a show previously with Sugar Sammy. It was weird because I haven’t done a 10 minute set in like two years. It went well and it’s always nice to be included in one of the galas.
Ron : How did you get started in comedy?
Loyiso : My inspiration was a school project. You had to choose a career and for a week you follow around people who are doing it. So I followed these comedians around for a week and wrote an essay on it. Before that I never really cared about what was happening in the stand up world. I did see Martin Lawrence, Seinfeld all that kind of stuff. Then I started doing it and I never looked back. I was 17 then and I’m 35 now. It’s been a great journey.
Ron : Well congratulations. You’ve been doing really well.
Loyiso : Thank you, thank you very much. I’m enjoying all of it.
Ron : I would think comedy is not the first job choice in South Africa.
Loyiso : Well it is now. It’s a big industry in South Africa. I was part of a group of people who spearheaded that movement.
Ron : What do you do outside of comedy?
Loyiso : I’m a big football fan. By football I mean soccer. I’m a big soccer fan. I read quite a bit.
Ron : So who’s going to win the world cup?
Loyiso : If was putting money on it I’d bet on France. This is a very difficult one to call because both teams are tough but I think France has a bit of an edge in this particular situation. They adapt to whoever is in front of them. It’ll be a game of who makes the most mistakes.
Ron : It’s time for the 2018 Just For Laughs question of the fest. What is your favourite comedy film of all time?
Loyiso : I try very hard not to be hyperbolic. That’s a tough question. If I was to answer the question it would be one film now but as human beings we grow in styles and our humour kind of evolves. If I was to go with one now… I’m not even sure this film qualifies as a comedy but it really made me laugh, it’s a film called Snatch. It’s directed by Guy Ritchie and starred Brad Pitt. That’s one of my favourite funny films. I don’t think it’s traditionally what is called a comedy film.
Ron : Well I think it’s all about whatever speaks to someone on a personal level that matters. So if for you that’s a comedy that speaks to you then that’s it.
Loyiso : Yeah (laughing). That’s my word and I’m sticking to it.
Ron : What’s in the future for you?
Loyiso : First of all I’ve got to be alive. (lauihing)I have to be thankful just for existence. I don’t really know yet. I’ve got a show written called Unlearning that’s been going around to Australia, UK and hopefully I will bring it to America and the world. What’s in that show is different to what I’m doing at the Ethnic show. It’s an hour long stand up show of me talking about my life. My perspective on things. If I could finish off 2018 by bringing that show to the world I’d be the happiest human being.
Ron : And a lot more people will be happy because they will be laughing. Thank you so much for the Ethnic show and your upcoming Netflix show. I wish you all the best.
Loyiso : Thank you for thinking I’’m worthy to talk with (laughing).
Make sure to get tickets for the Ethnic Show or Loyiso’s appearance for the Netflix specials all at https://www.hahaha.com/en/artists/loyiso-gola