Stewart Francis is bringing his final ever stand-up tour, Into The Punset, to the Assembly Hall, Worthing on Tuesday, November 20 as he moves more into acting.
“For me, it’s a happy conclusion as I’ve left the best till last. I’m thrilled to bits with what I have and it’s nice to go out on a high, like when the athlete that throws the winning touchdown in the Super Bowl then retires.”
Stewart is confident he has a farewell show that will be remembered fondly as he’s been trying it out on the folks back home. “I’ve been doing it in Canada, my home and native land,
where I got to workshop it and get it into my brain. I write solely for British audiences, so I was doing jokes there that I knew full well the Canadian audiences wouldn’t really appreciate.
“But I had fun with it by stepping back from the joke to tell them what I’m going for in it and when I repeated it, that would generally be a nice moment. There’d be some sarcastic laughs . . . but what are drunks like?”
As for the future: “I’m going to step away from comedy and focus on acting which is another passion. When you’re a comedian, casting directors can be a bit lazy and think, ‘well he’s just a comedian’ but I’m not.
“I think I have some significant acting chops and I want to prove that to myself and to the world. But when you’re wearing both hats as a comedian and an actor, you can be taken less se-riously; so I want there to be a real separation.”
He stresses this won’t be a fake finale: “I saw Simply Red’s last show at the O2 three years ago and they came back out a year later! I have way too much respect for the audience to do some-thing like that.
“People don’t know me well enough to know how much I value the crowd and how much I ap-preciate their time. Even if I did want to come back, I wouldn’t do it, I’d get a job doing what I needed to do, because I try to be a man of my word. Sadly we live in a world where there’s all this cynicism and some people might believe that it’s just a publicity thing. It’s not. This is my last tour.”