1) As always, the basics: name and what you tell people you do when you get asked at a party

Hilaire Carmody, I always ask them which hat they want to know more about, my day job at Toi Whakaari, my night time is spent looking after all the new comedians on the Wellington comedy scene or my other passion, the Free’n’Cheap list, which is my own not-so-secret arts gig guide for Wellington.

2) What’s an upcoming project that you’re really excited about? 

As above, for which hat? Personally, I’m already gathering my supplies for another Frocktober Fundraiser. I made a bunch of money for the NZ Gynecological Cancer Foundation last year just by wearing a different ‘interesting’ dress each day and writing funny instagram selfies. This year I intend to do it again and I’m looking for more unlovable clothing, I’m happy to have no shame for a good cause.

Creatively I’ve just finished Comedy Festival for 2014 with Pundemonium, so there is a small performance hiatus and I’m in the dreaming phase before preparing for 2015. So I’m scheming some workshops and support events for local comedians which I’ll be announcing soon.

Pragmatically I’m also looking to translate the Free’n’Cheap list into a webblog and expand it’s reach and function. I want to share more of the little secrets and fun times Wellington has. Nerdy times ahoy!

3) What do you wish people understood about what you do?

It’s not just what I do, but for the wider sector of performing arts that I work in, which is that I believe quality entertainment is not free.  It takes a lot of time, skill and practice to be an entertainer. How many times has a dancer, singer, actor, comedian, cartoonist, etc. been asked to participate in an event and there is no money to pay them but “it’s good exposure/networking/experience”?  If that’s the case, stick your niece who has just started learning bagpipes up on stage to advance her career then see how long your guests enjoy it… If you wish to be entertained well, be prepared to pay for it. The artists have busted their guts to get where they are and need the recognition they deserve.

4) Tell us what the best piece of advice ever given to you was… 

“Will you regret not doing it?”

This question has steered me quite a few places over my life, and I’d say pushed me to try a lot of new things, or work with people I might not have considered. On the other hand it’s also helped me learn when to say no. I’ve learnt to listen to my puku and steer myself away from a few projects that would have otherwise taxed or exhausted me.

5) You’ve got visitors coming to Wellington, where would you take them on your perfect day out?

Moore Wilson’s is the first stop to stock up on picnic food. I love their coffee and taking time browsing. We’d bike around the bays and try find that magic point where we can watch the planes come in and out but we’re still sheltered by the wind – it’s different each time. If it’s hot and sunny go for a dip and drip dry. Afterwards we’d wheel back into town for a show at bats and cocktails at Understudy.

6) Sum up your life in a song lyric… 

“I live each day of my life to the full”

Ok I admit I cheated, it’s not a song lyric as I’m having trouble with this one. I’ve taken a quote from an artpiece I own and get inspiration from by gorgeous local artist Rose Marie Salmon.