BWW Interviews: Rob Newman About His NEW THEORY OF EVOLUTION

Comedian, author and political activist Rob Newman revealed his New Theory of Evolution at Islington's Little Angel Theatre last summer.

Now he's heading into the West End for a January run at the Soho Theatre.

"The show's come on since then," he explains, listing the changes he's made to add to and extend the material.

He attempts to summarise just what the show's about, throwing about phrases like "survival of the misfits", "evolutionary biology" and "reigning theory" - and then he laughs and says, "This sounds really tedious. Even I wouldn't go and see this show! Let's just say - it's the story of my plans to get my cockamamie ideas taken seriously."

He talks about how people have appropriated Charles Darwin's theories for their own ends, which he argues has been damaging.

"They say that 'dog-eat-dog' is inevitable - and that's not what he was saying," he points out.

Newman's "cockamamie ideas" are, inevitably, both hilarious and a heck of a lot of material for thought. In recent years he's been writing and talking about a huge range of topics, including 16th century slavery, the oil trade and the food crisis.

"I think you should follow your own interests," he says. "Things you feel curious about and passionate about.

"Philosophically, all good comedy comes from things that interest you in some way.

"I think this is an optimistic show. Negativity doesn't mean something's more funny - Laurel and Hardy were always optimistic, always hopeful. Look at Daniel Kitson and his questing spirit; or Bridget Christie."

If you can't make it to London for the Soho run, Newman is out on a 48-date tour around the UK throughout the spring.

"I'm really, really enjoying it. The show is evolving as I go along - and touring is something I haven't done enough of."

After this country-wide tour, then, perhaps a West End residency beckons...?

Rob Newman's New Theory of Evolution plays the Soho Theatre until 18th January and then a UK tour.

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From This Author Carrie Dunn

Carrie is the UK editor-in-chief for BroadwayWorld. After spending her formative years reading books and ending up with a Masters degree in English literature from (read more...)