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Luke Bolland: ‘Bubble Boy’ stirring bubble trouble

27 January 2022

Fringe World favourite Luke Bolland is back with a Perth-centric stand-up show inspired by WA’s COVID-19 bubble.

After WA’s hard border forced local comedian Luke Bolland to stay put in Perth and forgo touring the US, he put pen to paper and wrote a comedy love letter to his hometown: Luke Bolland: Bubble Boy.

The Gosnells-native speaks to Isabella Corbett about his brand new stand-up show, being made fun of by audience members, and why his wife is the perfect sounding board for his jokes.

Isabella Corbett: Welcome to the Festival Sessions, Luke Bolland. For Seesaw Mag readers who don’t know you, can you tell us a bit about yourself and your work? 

Close up of Luke Bolland in a black jacket speaking and holding a microphone.
Award-winning stand-up comedian, Luke Bolland. Image: supplied

Luke Bolland: I’m an Australian comedian who’s been in the business for more than 10 years. I’ve performed alongside famous comedians like Chris Rock and Jimmy Fallon, and have previously won the Fringe World Overall Best Comedy award. I also used to host the breakfast show on 92.9fm. 

IC: Tell us about Bubble Boy, your brand new stand-up comedy show.

LB: Bubble Boy is a comedy love letter to the people of Perth. The show came about in 2021 after my plans to do a comedy tour of America were put on hold thanks to the border closures. So, I decided to make lemonade out of lemons while I was stuck in Perth and create a show just for the people of my beautiful hometown. 

IC: What do you hope audiences will take away from your show? 

LB: I hope that for the hour they are there, they can forget about every stress and worry of the outside world, and just have a good laugh. I work really hard at my shows to make sure the audience has a good time — even when I make fun of places like Gosnells it comes from a good place because I literally grew up there and love it. 

IC: Take us behind the scenes Bubble Boy. What happens backstage? 

LB: We have a tiny, curtained-off area backstage that’s slightly bigger than a shower and I have to hide quietly in that space while I wait for the show to start. I can hear everything the audience says as they walk in. Last year, I overheard someone say: “It’s a good thing he’s so funny because he isn’t much to look at,” and let me tell you, comedy is harder to perform when your feelings are hurt!

IC: That would have stung! How do you test your jokes?

LB: I’ve been with my wife for 19 years and pretty much every joke gets run past her at least once before we settle into bed at night. She’ll be getting ready to fall asleep and just before she dozes off will hear: “Okay, how about this, babe?” and then I’ll tell her my latest joke ideas. It sounds like a lot of fun but after nearly two decades of listening to my jokes while she’s desperately trying to get to sleep, I think the novelty may have worn off.

IC: Aside from presenting Bubble Boy, what are you looking forward to doing at Fringe World 2022? 

LB: I’m also doing a one-night-only encore of my award-winning comedy show Luke Bolland: Name Dropper. It’s probably the last time I will ever do the show, so I’m looking forward to giving it the nice farewell it deserves at the Royale Theatre in Northbridge.

Luke Bolland: Bubble Boy plays The Pleasure Garden as part of Fringe World, 1 – 13 February 2022.

Pictured top: Even WA Premier Mark McGowan features in Luke Bolland’s stand-up show, ‘Luke Bolland: Bubble Boy’. Photo: supplied

“The Festival Sessions” is an annual series of Q&A interviews with artists who will be appearing in Perth’s summer festivals. Stay tuned for more!

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A woman in a leopard print shirt rests her chin on her fist and smiles slightly

Author —
Isabella Corbett

Emerging writer Isabella Corbett is a postgraduate journalism student at Curtin University. After completing a Bachelor of Design (Fine Arts) at UWA, she quickly realised that she preferred tip-tapping away on a keyboard writing about other people’s art and hasn’t picked up a piece of charcoal since. At the playground, you’ll find her trying to fly higher than the person next to her on the swings.

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