Stewart Lee in conversation: comedy, culture and art

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Who this event is for

  • Prospective students - undergraduate


Main Lecture Theatre, Clerici, Headington Campus, Gipsy Lane site


Writer, comedian and director Stewart Lee talks about a life of writing, stand-up comedy, television and coping with occasional controversy with Head of English and Modern Languages at Oxford Brookes University, Simon Kövesi.

Stewart will be probed across topics such as: politics, culture and the social role of the comedian; writing for television, stage, performance and print; and converting stand-up routines into published scripts. At the end Stewart will take questions from the audience and will sign books, DVDs and CDs.

Stewart Lee began stand-up at the age of 20 in 1988, winning the Hackney Empire new act of the year award in 1990. In the 1990s he contributed to various BBC Radio comedy shows, including Fist of Fun and On The Hour, with Steve Coogan and Chris Morris, performed as a stand-up almost nightly on the London circuit, and co-created four series for BBC2 with Richard Herring. Stewart directed the Mighty Boosh’s breakthrough Edinburgh show, Arctic Boosh (1999) and Simon Munnery’s Golden Rose Of Montreux nominated BBC2 show, Attention Scum, (2000). In 2001 he was invited to help write the libretto of, and direct, the composer Richard Thomas’ developing work, Jerry Springer The Opera, at Battersea Arts Centre. The show won four Olivier awards after its National Theatre run.

Stewart Lee’s Comedy Vehicle ran on BBC2 in 2009 and 2011. In 2010, the programme was nominated for a BAFTA TV Award for Best Comedy Programme. At the British Comedy Awards in 2011, Stewart won Best Male TV Comic and the series won Best Comedy Entertainment Programme. In May 2012 another two series of Comedy Vehicle were commissioned by BBC Two, to air in 2014 and 2015.

Stewart is the author of a novel, The Perfect Fool (4th Estate 2000), the stand-up treatise How I Escaped My Certain Fate (Faber and Faber 2010) and extended stand-up script The ‘If You Prefer a Milder Comedian Please Ask For One’ EP (Faber and Faber 2012), and the theatre pieces Pea Green Boat (Traverse/BAC 2002), What Would Judas Do? (Bush/BAC 2007), Johnson and Boswell, Late But Live (Traverse 2007), and Interiors (Manchester International Festival 2007, with Johnny Vegas).

He is a patron of the arts radio station Resonance 104.4 FM, and has written on music for The Sunday Times, The Wire, Bucketful Of Brains, and Mojo.

You can see more from Stewart on his website at