A Quick Chat With Celia Pacquola

Stand up comic Celia Pacquola is bringing her sold out 2012 Melbourne Comedy Festival stand up show Delayed to the Adelaide Fringe Festival where she will share stories of her international idiot-ventures at The Rhino Room this month.

Pacquola starred in ABC TV’s successful black comedy Laid, and has also featured as a guest on Spicks & Specks, Talkin’ Bout Your Generation, Adam Hills In Gordon St Tonight, The Project, Good News Week and Rove throughout her careers.

We catch up with this lauded comedian to ask her our 20 questions…


As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
An actor. Starting in comedy films, then doing a serious ‘breakout’ performance in something, then somehow turn into Meryl Streep then spend my 30s (as a child that was super old) writing books.

Who is the most important person in the world to you?
My mum. I don’t know what I’d do without her. She’s excellent, hilarious without meaning to be and knows how to do taxes. She’s the best. Oh and Dr. Phil.

What animal best represents you and why?
A cat. I like naps, putting my bum in the air and generally only pay attention to my boyfriend when he is trying to do something else.

If you were a contestant on Deal or No Deal, how much would you need to be on offer before you walked away?
It’s weird. If it was a pile of cash, that I could see, I’d take like $100 in twenty dollar notes. But because it’s written on a cheque, probably more like $50,000. Somehow cash seems more valuable to me… I’m not good with money.

What was the first piece of theatre/film/TV you ever appeared in and how old were you?
I was about 6 I think, with family friends and we put on a play of the emperors new clothes in the backyard. Thinking about it now, that story had actual nudity in it. I don’t remember that bit. Maybe I blocked it out. Oh well. BACK TO THE THERAPIST FOR ME.

Windows or MAC?
MAC. Always has been, always will be.

Favourite food?

Who is the actor you would most like to work alongside?
Tina Fey.

What would be the first five songs you put on a ‘mix-tape’ playlist?
Just shuffled my ipod and got: Under Pressure, Three Little birds, I’m so excited, The time of my life, Wild Wild West (Will Smith) but I do also have the Escape Club one.

What is the best thing about theatre in Australia?
I’m not sure, I don’t get to see as much as I’d like but when I do I’m always impressed with the originality and quality of the productions.

What’s the worst thing about theatre in Australia?
I can’t see as much as I’d like because I work nights. I’m a stand up comic. I’m not sure if that’s been covered.

Name one moment when you looked around, breathed happily and felt content.
I’d done my first gig with Frank Woodley (I have always been a huge fan) and was watching him onstage and he referenced me and said something nice about me and I think I died for 2.3 seconds.

Where is the most interesting place you have travelled?

What is your go-to shower song? 
I don’t sing in the shower, I do say “OW” out loud a lot, it happens when I remember something embarrassing I said/did the night before.

Most embarrassing thing that’s ever happened to you onstage?
Fly undone.

What’s your life motto?
Here we go. This is happening.

What’s your favourite post-show snack?
Sausage rolls.

What’s your biggest phobia?
Someone turning up and saying, ‘I’m sorry, there’s been a mistake, this isn’t your life, turns out you’re a cleaning lady and you live with your parents, please come with us.’

What is the worst date you’ve ever had?
What? Really? Ok. He was a blonde tri-athlete. My favorite food is cheese. Nuff said.

Where do you see yourself in five years?
Hopefully not waiting tables or pulling beers. Hopefully sitting at tables writing, drinking beers and getting up to tell jokes.

Celia Pacquola’s show Delayed is playing Upstairs at the Rhino Room from 14 February – 2 March.

Tickets: Full $23, Concession $20, Group $20

Time: 7.15pm

Bookings: FringeTIX 1300 621 255 or www.adelaidefringe.com.au

Erin James

Erin James is AussieTheatre.com's former Editor in Chief and a performer on both stage and screen. Credits include My Fair Lady, South Pacific and The King and I (Opera Australia), Love Never Dies and Cats (Really Useful Group), Blood Brothers (Enda Markey Presents), A Place To Call Home (Foxtel/Channel 7) and the feature film The Little Death (written and directed by Josh Lawson).

Erin James

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