Interview: Foxdog Studios

forest-dwellers

Foxdogs Studios, are, genuinely, quite unlike any comedy act you’ve ever seen. They are computer programmers run amok. Elaborate coding, ramshackle mechanics and musical instruments combine in an electronic rock and roll explosion. Quirky. Intricate. A glorious waste of time from two men who could probably have invented something useful by now. We chatted to Peter Sutton and Lloyd Henning about their comedy act (but don’t tell HMRC)…

Where does the name Foxdog Studios come from?

We wanted our computer consultancy to have a fun name, but didn’t understand branding. So we chose a combination of our online handles: foxxy for Peter and eldog for Lloyd. This has caused great confusion about what services we provide and lost us thousands of pounds of potential business. Our advice for anyone else naming a company is to be specific, interesting and to check that there isn’t already a bespoke greetings card manufacturer in Albuquerque, New Mexico called Foxdog Studio.

How would you describe your act?

Surreal computer consultants who push interactive technology further than anyone’s ever bothered. The show is not only for techies: us nerds created it, but it’s designed for normal people.

Do you consider yourselves to be comedians?

We, the HMRC, and Companies House, consider ourselves to be software developers.

What’s your writing process like? Which comes first, the show or the tech?

We think of something funny to make, e.g., bongo boots. Then we make it and use it in front of people. Do that six times and you’ve got an hour.

Tell us your “origin story”. How did you get into performing?

We refused to obtain employment and instead started our own I.T. consultancy (Foxdog Studios Ltd). A year past and we decided to hate our clients. As a reprieve, we started playing “Girls Just Want to Have Fun” at the music open-mic at Fuel Cafe Bar, Manchester. After twelve weeks of that, we filled in a form online and performed at a fringe festival in Edinburgh, Scotland.

Who are your influences as performers?

Music: Kraftwerk, Manowar, Takenobu Mitsuyoshi, Tenacious D, Yellow Magic Orchestra. Technology: CD Projeckt RED, Double Fine, ES2015, Frictional Games, IEEE802.11, Meteor, PostgreSQL, Vim, WHATWG.

Lighting: David A. Goldsmith

What’s the weirdest or most memorable gig you’ve ever done?

We’ve performed in a glass walled meeting room with an office of people trying to work outside. Throughout our performance we were continually reminded to “keep it down” and our rock ‘n’ roll reputation was jeopardised. However, our fear of confrontation saw us through and we gently whispered out our biggest bangers.

Favourite gig? Specific or regular.

Every gig is stressful before, during and after. The volume of equipment we require means all the time before a show is directed towards moving, fixing and assembling. After the gig, there’s no partying as we’ve 100 kg of electronics to babysit. Our favourite gigs are in our house, where the equipment already is. We can go offstage, upstairs and get straight into bed.

Foxdog Studios have been nominated for the rather impressive sounding Award for Innovation in the Chortle Awards 2016. Vote for them here.

If you live in Sheffield, you can see them live at Regather Comedy Club on the 5th March. Tickets and more info here.

Foxdog don’t bark or woof, but they do tweet @foxdogstudios

You can find out about their “comedy” gigs on Facebook.

You can hire them to do genuine IT tasks here: https://foxdogstudios.com/

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