Cariad Lloyd: The comedian on her tap-dancing past, her addiction to reality shows, and her 'affair' with David Bowie


I didn't intend to become a comedian I wanted to be a serious actor. None of my family were in the business and I didn't even know that comedy was a job. I was obsessed with comedy as a child – Blackadder, Red Dwarf – but I started out acting in very serious plays about people being burnt alive.

I wanted to be a dancer but then I discovered smoking As a kid I did ballet and tap and jazz and I regret that I didn't go on with it, but like most teenagers, I discovered the ability to say no to things for no good reason and sadly just didn't continue.

It look me so long to get my career going because I lack confidence in myself When I first started acting, I had a few horrible auditions where people just said, "You're not good enough," and I believed them because I thought they knew what they were doing. In reality, it doesn't matter what anybody else thinks; if you want to do it, you have to do it.

To be funny on TV takes a lot of hard work It's very easy when you're at home to shout at the television and say that no one does anything good in comedy any more; what you want to show people is that it looks easy and fun but what they're not aware of are the 17 drafts of the two-minute sketch you've just been through.

I get more nervous with a script than without one My personality and brain are very suited to improvisation. I am always 110 per cent more terrified before a scripted show than I am for an improv performance. For me, the fear of writing things down stems from the idea that the audience could think, "Wait, you thought about that, and believed it was good enough to come and perform in front of us." With improv, if I have no idea, then I have no idea.

I thought I was dating David Bowie Every year I do a show called the Improvathon, which is a 50-hour show. One year, one of the characters, who was pretending to be my boyfriend, was playing David Bowie from Labyrinth. I had been on stage for over two days and became so hallucinogenic from the lack of sleep that I thought I was going out with the real David Bowie. I remember thinking, "This is really bad because he's married, so we're going to have to talk about this." I had to be carried off stage, but it's happened to everybody.

It took me years to realise that people aren't amazing when they start out You see comedians' finished product and you think, "Wow, they're so incredible," but you didn't see them when they were awkward 18-year-olds trying out new jokes.

I hate people who lack honesty I come from quite a blunt family where if someone does something wrong, they tell you – so I'm not very good when people aren't honest about things.

I'm very proud of my laptop because it was the first thing I treated myself to when I started to earn some money. But why they had to combine the thing I use to write with the internet is very annoying. All I do now is sit there and watch BBC reality shows – Great British Bake-Off, The Voice, Strictly Come Dancing. Or I'll just go to Netflix and obsessively watch seven seasons of the American version of The Office or Modern Family. There's so much stuff, you feel like you've got to catch up.

Cariad Lloyd is a comedian, actor and writer who won a Best Newcomer nomination at the Edinburgh Comedy Awards in 2011 for her debut solo show. She can soon be seen in Sky Living sitcom 'Give Out Girls' and BBC3's 'Crims', and is currently touring the UK with 'Austentatious: An Improvised Novel' (for details:

Arts and Entertainment
Rachel McAdams in True Detective season 2

TV review
Arts and Entertainment
Off the wall: the cast of ‘Life in Squares’

Arts and Entertainment

Books And it is whizzpopping!

Arts and Entertainment
Bono throws water at the crowd while the Edge watches as they perform in the band's first concert of their new world tour in Vancouver

MusicThey're running their own restaurants

The main entrance to the BBC headquarters in London
TV & Radio
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Solved after 200 years: the mysterious deaths of 3,000 soldiers from Napoleon's army

    Solved after 200 years

    The mysterious deaths of 3,000 soldiers from Napoleon's army
    Every regional power has betrayed the Kurds so Turkish bombing is no surprise

    Robert Fisk on the Turkey conflict

    Every regional power has betrayed the Kurds so Turkish bombing is no surprise
    Investigation into wreck of unidentified submarine found off the coast of Sweden

    Sunken sub

    Investigation underway into wreck of an unidentified submarine found off the coast of Sweden
    Instagram and Facebook have 'totally changed' the way people buy clothes

    Age of the selfie

    Instagram and Facebook have 'totally changed' the way people buy clothes
    Not so square: How BBC's Bloomsbury saga is sexing up the period drama

    Not so square

    How Virginia Woolf saga is sexing up the BBC period drama
    Rio Olympics 2016: The seven teenagers still carrying a torch for our Games hopes

    Still carrying the torch

    The seven teenagers given our Olympic hopes
    The West likes to think that 'civilisation' will defeat Isis, but history suggests otherwise

    The West likes to think that 'civilisation' will defeat Isis...

    ...but history suggests otherwise
    The bald truth: How one author's thinning hair made him a Wayne Rooney sympathiser

    The bald truth

    How thinning hair made me a Wayne Rooney sympathiser
    Froome wins second Tour de France after triumphant ride into Paris with Team Sky

    Tour de France 2015

    Froome rides into Paris to win historic second Tour
    Fifteen years ago, Concorde crashed, and a dream died. Today, the desire to travel faster than the speed of sound is growing once again

    A new beginning for supersonic flight?

    Concorde's successors are in the works 15 years on from the Paris crash
    I would never quit Labour, says Liz Kendall

    I would never quit party, says Liz Kendall

    Latest on the Labour leadership contest
    Froome seals second Tour de France victory

    Never mind Pinot, it’s bubbly for Froome

    Second Tour de France victory all but sealed
    Oh really? How the 'lowest form of wit' makes people brighter and more creative

    The uses of sarcasm

    'Lowest form of wit' actually makes people brighter and more creative
    A magazine editor with no vanity, and lots of flair

    No vanity, but lots of flair

    A tribute to the magazine editor Ingrid Sischy
    Foraging: How the British rediscovered their taste for chasing after wild food

    In praise of foraging

    How the British rediscovered their taste for wild food