SARA Pascoe's new tour show, LadsLadsLads, is a "thinking person’s stag-do".

Let the Dagenham stand-up comedian, playwright, author, radio presenter, actress and vegan explain ahead of her autumn gigs at Harrogate Theatre on October 9 and Leeds City Varieties the next night.

"It’s sometimes hard to summarise what a show is about. I wanted to give people the sense that it is fun and celebratory, but rather than about being getting married, it's the exact opposite," says Sara, who already has performed LadsLadsLads at last summer's Edinburgh Fringe and in a sold-out West End run.

"It's about having fun, trying new things, being braver and more self-reliant. Some of my shows in the past have had serious aspects, theories and research, but this one is lighter. It’s like a party, except only I get to talk and you have to sit there watching me."

Roll on her autumn dates, says Sara: "I love going on tour. I love our nation, I love rainy days up north and cold evenings by the seaside. It’s a luxury to get to travel for your job and it’s still a novelty for me. Ask me again in 20 years."

LadsLadsLads will be freshened up for LeedsLeedsLeeds and Harrogate because the show constantly evolves. "As my comedy is personal, there are always updates," says 37-year-old Sara. "The show develops with recent escapades: my friends can persuade me to do anything by saying 'you’ll get five minutes out of it'.

"That’s how I was recently tricked into watching a West Ham football match and seeing the film IT. They were both equally scary and I got exactly zero minutes out of them."

Polymath Pascoe, whose stage adaptation of Jane Austen's Pride And Prejudice was premiered at York Theatre Royal last October, has a new book on the way entitled Sex Power Money, published by Faber & Faber on March 28 2019. "It’s about porn and sex work from a historical and evolutionary perspective," she says. "I am taking biology and the plasticity of human sexuality into account, and also laying out the whole spectrum of arguments in the debate about these aspects of our society.

"I’m also trying to explore power dynamics in sexual exchanges, which are not as clearly defined as paying for sex: things like men paying for dinner, the abuse by powerful, rich men such as Weinstein and Trump. But with jokes, like my last book Animal. I'm talking about serious, important stuff, but keeping it accessible and stimulating, rather than hectoring."

Writing her books, 2016's Animal: The Autobiography Of A Female Body and now Sex Money Power, has changed her stand-up comedy, reckons Sara. "I think I’m funnier now because I can spend more time with ideas for the books; after a day’s writing, doing a gig is a release. I only want to be silly, and it doesn’t feel as selfish, if that makes sense?" she says.

"Comedy feels like a child’s job: you can’t believe you’re getting paid to do it. But there are huge things going on in the world and sometimes you feel a responsibility, because you’ve a mic in your hand. But now that responsible side, which cares about the state of the world, can go into book writing and stand-up can be a distraction from that."

That "responsible side" also came out in Sara's BBC Radio 4 series Modern Monkey, wherein she explored the modern social world. "I wish it had been more scientific and I could’ve done more research, but I kept being reminded it was supposed to be a comedy show and I had to write jokes about things," she says.

"We recorded the show at several museums and I was so interested to visit and learn – especially at the Foundling Museum – something I knew nothing about. It is such a tragic thing, mothers giving away their children because they cannot afford to support them."

As her latest tour approaches, Sara notes has the world of comedy has changed since she first stood behind a mic in 2007. "I think audiences are changing and that directly influences the acts. Comedy used to be a crueller place, and while there is still lots of that kind of stuff – and lots of people who love it – there is a lot more diversity now. And I hope that continues," she says.

"Live comedy is flourishing within an economic downturn and that is because the people making jokes are from a much wider spectrum. Their experiences are fresh and exciting, and audiences want that. It’s not the individual white, able-bodied man’s fault that historically, comedy clubs were so reliant on stereotype and tropes, but only one type of person’s reality was being reflected and I’m glad that’s changing."

What lies in store for ever-busy Sara Pascoe? "I’d like to go do some stand-up in America and hopefully do some writing for TV," she says. "And another play. And I want to get a dog. And then more adventures so I can write another show."

Sara Pascoe presents LadsLadsLads at Harrogate Theatre, October 9, 7.30pm, at Harrogate Comedy Festival 2018, and Leeds City Varieties, October 10, 7.30pm. Box office: Harrogate, 01423 502116 or at; Leeds, 0113 243 0808 or

Charles Hutchinson