Colchester: Comedian Katherine Ryan talks motherhood, divorce and thinking positive at Colchester Arts Centre

Comedian Katherine Ryan is at Colchester Arts Centre tonight

Comedian Katherine Ryan is at Colchester Arts Centre tonight - Credit: Archant

KATHERINE Ryan’s debut UK stand-up tour is a bitter sweet treat. Having experienced motherhood, divorce and MTV, she’s out to prove the things in life that make us bitter can actually be quite delicious and hilarious.

I’ve caught the award-winning comedian in the middle of the school run; our conversation occasionally interrupted by her three-year-old daughter’s talk of scooters and swimming.

“It’s nice to do interviews and stuff because you get a real sense of my actual life,” says Katherine, regularly seen on 8 Out Of 10 Cats, Never Mind The Buzzcocks, Mock The Week and various other TV shows.

“Oh TV is so much fun. It’s an honour to work with people you’ve admired for years, but it makes the live audiences across the country aware of what you do and that’s helped a lot to get people out to see my live shows. That’s what I really want, that’s what my real job is to; travelling around doing stand-up.

“I love collaborating in the panel shows. But if you’re part of an ensemble or you’re working in a team, if something goes wrong you’ve let all these people down where if a joke doesn’t go over in stand-up at least you’ve only let yourself down; I think there’s great comfort in that,” says Katherine, who’s actually an Irish citizen but grew up in Canada, hence the twang.

The tour, which started last week and follows two hugely successful Edinburgh Festival shows, is going well.

“The show is very positive, but that doesn’t mean it’s clean and happy all the time. I’ve always looked at every aspect of my life with this unwavering positivity and sweetness; I think that’s why it’s called Nature’s Candy because I think when life gives you lemons you should say ‘thanks life, this will be great on fish’.”

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It examines our relationships with family, ourselves, celebrity culture and the news but from a fresh point of view audiences may not have seen before.

Katherine, who played George in Campus and was a regular in Episodes, is working on a bunch of different TV ideas at the moment. She’s looking to start writing her new live show soon.

“This [show] is really putting to bed the best parts of my last two Edinburgh Fringe shows with some new material and some different twists; I think that’s why we love to do a full hour, it really purges that old material and gives you the impetus to keep writing more.”

She hopes audiences will leave feeling as positive about life as she does.

“It’s an evening to relax, be honest, be real, but also to walk out feeling really positive about your own life. I’ve been through some struggles myself just in my lifestyle but also health-wise and I really do find the best way to turn your situation around is make it positive.”

Katherine Ryan, Nature’s Candy, comes to Colchester Arts Centre tonight.