The New Zealand International Comedy Festival has entered its second week and we’ve had a chat with local vegan comedian Joseph Moore. His show Young Comedy Billionaire is on at The Basement Studio in Auckland until May 10.

  1. How long have you been vegetarian and vegan?

    Been vegetarian for about five years. Vegan just this year. I think it’s something I’ve always known was important to me. I gave it a bash for a year when I was 12. But I didn’t have any idea how to eat properly as a vego then. Resulted in a lot of marmite sandwiches for dinner.

  2. Any shows you’d like to recommend in the comedy festival?

    So many, this has been my favourite comedy festival already and we’re just halfway through. The younger/newer generation of local comedians have all really come into their own this year and are just writing superb shows. In week three, all the Billy T Nominees will be fantastic, as will James Roque. (Also all the vegan comedians: Sara Pascoe, Michael Legge, Carl Donnelly #solidarity). Oh and mine.

  3. Do you talk about your veganism in your stand-up?

    Yeah a little bit. Most of my comedy comes from my own experiences and true stories, so it tends to feature. I don’t go too deep in the world as to alienate the audience… “You know when you’re buying textured vegetable protein right?…. What’s the deal with nutritional yeast flakes???”

  4. What can people expect from your festival show this year?

    An hour of a young man trying his hardest to live his dream of being a superstar. Only to be thwarted by ridiculous insecurity. You know, normal comedian stuff.

  5. Favourite place to eat in New Zealand?

    Would have to be the Little Bird Unbakery at the moment. The mexican plate there is my favourite thing. It’s such a novelty being in a place where you can eat anything from the menu, I often spend way too much money there as I feel like it would be a waste just to get one thing. My favourite place before it closed was The Loving Hut, mainly because they would play hilarious distracting videos advertising being a vegan, which is really preaching to the converted. Play those videos in Carl’s Jr or something!

  6. What are your top tips for travelling vegans?

    Hummus on whatever. I’m lazy: I don’t make my own. I love all the Lisa’s ones. I know Lisa’s is some tax dodging company that we’re not supposed to like. But damn, Lisa, that hummus. The Asian Eggplant one … it just dawned on me I haven’t even checked if that is vegan friendly. It feels like it is.

  7. Do you tour much with your comedy?

    Yeah, thanks to this awesome show Fanfiction Comedy I am a part of, I get to spend a couple of months a year in different countries. This year in Edinburgh, Glasgow and Melbourne. And also once I went to New Plymouth to do a gig.

  8. What are your top tips for travelling vegans?

    Oh I wish I had any. I’m terrible at it. I spent three days in Prague basically eating just bread because I was too afraid to ask people in restaurants to alter their menus. They seem really serious about meat over there. I have the Happy Cow app on my phone, which is a cool thing that uses your location and shows you vego friendly places nearby.

  9. What do you do more, cook meals or buy?

    I cook at home maybe once or twice a week as a special treat. We have a leaky fridge and I am currently avoiding dealing with it by not buying food to put in it. I’d love to cook more. I think my flat is getting a new fridge soon so let’s see how that goes.

  10. Strangest thing someone’s said to you about your diet?

    No one’s really said anything. But I love how no one really believes it, because I’m a big, goofy looking guy, who I guess doesn’t look like a stereotypical vegan. When I’m at a cafe with either a girl or a skinny dude, they will always put the vegan meal in front of the other person without asking who ordered what. Like “this doofus CAN’T be a vegan.”