Matt Okine currently co-hosts the breakfast show on Triple J. He started his comedy career in Brisbane, has since moved to Sydney, and has performed at many festivals around the world. He sometimes appears on TV too thanks to a Bachelor of Fine Arts in acting that was largely a waste of time, but did manage to play an Ethiopian diplomat on Sea Patrol once despite not being of Ethiopian heritage and putting on a damn-near offensive accent. He also played a cross-dresser on All Saints. “Oh yeah, baby. And my teachers told me I’d never amount to nothing…”

We sent Matt some questions. Here are his answers!

First comedy gig: when and where and how did it go?

“Raw Comedy 2004. I was 18 and only told two friends. I didn’t want anyone knowing I was doing it, but I also needed someone to drive cos I knew I’d be drinking heavily to get over the nerves. Luckily I didn’t drink too much and I won my heat.”

What drew you into performing comedy?

“It was something I’d always wanted to do, but I didn’t know where to start. Then I heard ads on Triple J and decided I’d give it a shot. It’s kind of weird, cos now I’m the voice on those ads telling people to give it a shot.”

Favourite comedian?

“Dave Chappelle for his career and what he stands for. Mitch Hedberg for his jokes.”

Comedian you would most like to be?

“Dave Chappelle. Hands down.”

Comedy duo or trio; who would be your partner/s in crime?

“Ronny Chieng. Even though his cooking stinks… (please tell him I told you that).”

Favourite joke you knew as a kid?

“Too racist.”

Most famous person’s number you have in your phone?

“My dad. He’s getting pretty famous now. I do a gig and people will come up after and be like, “hey good show. Where’s your dad???”

Favourite movie line?

“…’Chillin’ out, maxin’, relaxin’, all cool, and all-shooting some B-Ball outside of the school….’ – Fresh Prince of Bel Air. Not a movie. but still legendary.”

Best gig, worst gig and why?

“BEST: MICF Oxfam Gala 2013. It suddenly hit me on stage that it was my favourite TV event of the year when I was a kid, and suddenly I was a part of it. I almost froze.

“WORST: Bomaderry, NSW. I spoke for 20mins without not so much as a titter of laughter. People afterwards threaten to beat me up in the carpark. Got a free schnitty though, so it ain’t all bad.”

Favourite imaginary friend as a kid?

“Didn’t have one. I just pretended I was various footy players and kicked imaginary goals in my lounge room.”

Job you currently perform in your alternative life when not performing comedy?”

“Co-host of Triple J breakfast.”

Your porn star name [first pet/first street]?

“Baby Jenkinson.”

What is your hidden talent?

“I don’t hide my talents. It’s not like they’re beers I’m trying to take into the cricket… oh wait – maybe that’s my talent!”

Tell us something that people don’t yet know about you.

“I’m currently nude in a hotel room on the gold coast. Alone.”

Favourite childhood memory?

“Breast-feeding. No regrets.”

Celebrity meet that left you star-struck?

“I haven’t acted more like a fanboy than when I met Dave Chappelle. It took three days for the nerves to die down before I could talk to him like a normal person.”

Pet hate?


Secret crush?

“Julia Stone.”

Time travel; where would you most love to go and why?

“Somewhere in the future. I’m a bit scared of the past. Brown people haven’t exactly been warmly welcomed for most of Western history.”

How do you deal with annoying people who insist you tell them a joke once they discover you are a comedian?

“Nipple cripple.”

What’s something from your childhood that you still love and have today?

“My sega saturn. I had the best game called “Athlete Kings”. They don’t make button-bashing athletics games like they used to, I’ll tell you that.”

Best or worst advice you were ever given?

“Do a gig in Bomaderry, mate. It’ll be fun!”

Best or worst advice you ever gave?

WORST: I told everyone I knew that the numbers on the toaster dial represent minutes… they don’t though! I was lied to… and I spread that lie like a ‘fact-STD’.

A missed opportunity that you would give anything to go back and try?

“In third year university, I said no to a film role because I wanted to do a theatre production. I’ve since done zero theatre productions since and have no desire to. I’d love to do more film though, so I have no idea what I was thinking.”

Which comedian would you 1. Snog? 2. Marry? 3.Avoid?

“Tina Fey. Tina Fey and Tina Fey …after she realises that I’ve been disguising myself as her husband the whole time…”

Has anyone literally wet themselves laughing at one of your shows?

“Maybe. I don’t check everyone.”

Favourite or worse heckle you’ve ever had?

“When the Bomaderry dudes told me they were going to beat me up in the carpark.”

If you were a flavour of ice cream, what would you be and why?

“Chocolate…. duh.”

Any famous last words?

“Thanks for having me, Bomaderry!”

Matt Okine performs The Other Guy at Palace Nova EziMax from 9.45pm until Sat Mar 7th.

Book at FringeTIX on 1300 261 255 or   Click here to purchase your tickets.

Image courtesy of Zak Kaczmarek

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