My Secret Life: Russell Kane, comedian, 30

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The Independent Online

My parents were ... Julie and Dave from Essex (no further biography needed).

The household I grew up in ... was a new sociological strata created by Thatcher. My dad owned his council house, detaching us from the working classes and failing to glue us to the lower-middle classes, putting us in the no man's land of sociology.

When I was a child I wanted to ... be a barrister, because my mum said that's the best money you can earn. I got a bit confused when coffee shops started – "That looks easy enough; earn £100K grinding beans, I'm up for that".

If I could change one thing about myself ... I would make my hair more manageable at medium length, because I have to glue it in place. I have to use gel and maximum hold hairspray.

You wouldn't know it but I'm very good at ... cooking, and I'm almost an expert on skincare regimes. I've managed to perfect the base curry sauce used in Bangladeshi cooking. And I'm a big fan of the clay face mask.

You wouldn't know it but I'm no good at ... If I touch a football it goes sideways. I have no co-ordination and I loathe all forms of sport.

It's not fashionable but I like ... Charles Aznavour and cheesy French music. And Ludovico Einaudi, a horribly mawkish mainstream composer.

What I see when I look in the mirror ... A man stuck at the age of 17 who's finally found what he wants to do and is ready to start ageing.

I wish I'd never worn ... men's culottes. I thought it was so cool, but now I'd like to travel through time and stab myself.

I drive ... a Toyota Prius hybrid, so I can feel better about myself as I drive to the airport to fly to Australia for the fifth time in a year.

My house is ... a semi-detached house in Essex, Westcliff-on-Sea. I'm 10 minutes from the beach and I never want to live anywhere else.

My favourite work of art ... St Francis and the Birds by Stanley Spencer. It's so trippy.

My favourite building ... I'm so lucky to be living the life I'm living at the moment – I'm travelling everywhere on the Fosters tour, going to amazing cities and museums – but nothing can quite compare to my own home.

My secret crush is ... Ann Widdecombe.

Movie heaven ... I would watch something amazing in the afternoon, like a film by De Sica, Bicycle Thieves, a classical piece of Italian cinema – you would cry, you would feel artistically cleansed ... then I would get drunk with Sadie and we'd watch Love, Actually in the evening.

A book that changed me ... Madame Bovary by Flaubert. He didn't begin writing till he was 35, and at school he was borderline remedial, dribble hanging out his mouth, no signs of potential. Yet by sheer hard work he wrote Madame Bovary.

My greatest regret ... is that my dad, and my nan, didn't live longer. They just missed, literally by a year, all that's happened to me.

The last time I cried ... I cry all the time, over everything. Yesterday, I cried at the third movement of Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata.

My five-year plan ... Don't have one. My plan is to never have a plan.

What's the point? To experience life to the full, never looking too far into the future or too far behind.

My life in six words ... Exhilarating, exciting, energetic, manic, bipolar, loving.

A life in brief

Russell Kane was born in Enfield, in 1980. He won the Laughing Horse New Act award in 2004 for his stand-up act, and after three nominations for Edinburgh Festival's highest comedy accolade (The Perrier, as it was known), won Best Comedy Show at this year's Foster's Edinburgh Comedy Awards ( He lives in Westcliff-on-Sea, Essex, with his partner, Sadie Hasler