Sam Wills is The Boy With Tape On His Face. Last year he won a much coveted Foster’s Comedy Award. So has that success changed him?
YOU’D be surprised how often I get asked, “How has success changed you?”, it’s right up there with “Does it hurt when you take the tape off?”. The answer to the first question is, I hope not, I’d like to think I’m the same person but I am what I am because I changed my life.
Success hasn’t changed me. Success sneaks up on you much like the killer in a teen horror flick. You don’t even realise you are successful until someone asks you this question. After all, success isn’t something you can measure.
I remember when I had a weekly cabaret show in a casino, that was a pretty successful time, at the time. When I met my wife, we lived in a tiny flat in Christchurch, New Zealand, we did street shows and festivals and we felt very successful, at the time.
Now I’m here, doing a whole load more paperwork and answering more questions than before, is that what success means? The more successful you are, the harder you work and the more successful you become and the harder you work and so on until you disappear under a pile of paperwork; or become so successful that someone else does it for you. Maybe that’s the measure of success, the less you have to do for yourself, the more successful you are.
So I guess the fact I’m still clearing the cat sh*t out of the litter tray means that I haven’t made it yet.
The truth is that I’m not sure that that moment will ever arrive because the more perceived success you have, the more you have to prove and the more paranoid you become that everything you’ve done until now is so much better than what is yet to come. I try to live by the motto, ‘this too shall pass’ because, to quote a song, whether times are good or bad, happy or sad, they’ll change.
• The Boy With Tape On His Face: More Tape, Pleasance Courtyard, until August 24, 9.40pm, £12-£13.50, 0131-226 0000