Star Interview: Joe Pasquale

Joe Pasquale
Joe Pasquale

Those who know of Joe Pasquale probably picture him as the squeaky voiced comedian who has graced TV screens for many years or as one of the crowned ‘kings of the jungle’ in I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here.

Perhaps one of the images furthest from their minds might be that of the brooding and often melancholic super-sleuth, Sherlock Holmes.

Nevertheless, Sherlock is exactly the character Joe will be playing in the comic show Ha Ha Holmes! which will be performed at The Castle theatre in Wellingborough tomorrow.

Joe said: “I’m looking forward to playing Sherlock Holmes, as this year I also played King Arthur in Spamalot in the West End, so to go from one of the most famous kings of all time to one of the most famous detectives in one year was a huge challenge, as both characters are a million miles away from who I am.”

But is there a lot of pressure in playing one of the best-loved characters in crime fiction?

Joe said: “I try not to put too much pressure on myself when doing this type of work, as I’m not a trained actor, but I try to give my version of each character.

“Ultimately there will be a lot of me in everyone I play, but not too much.”

Now a familiar face in comedy, Joe’s career started out about 30 years ago.

He said: “I started at a holiday camp in the early 1980s, calling bingo and refereeing wrestling matches, but my TV career started on New Faces in 1987 and I haven’t looked back. I have never had a big plan on what course my career would or should take. I just grab every opportunity that comes my way.

“After doing New Faces, a few years later I was asked to perform in The Royal Variety Show in 1993, that was the big springboard for me; I’ve done five Royal Variety Shows now.”

Arguably, Joe’s most recognisable trait is his unusual voice, which has been the object of many TV jokes over the years. But has that been a hindrance?

“In a nutshell,” he said, “I think my voice has been a help, it’s instantly recognisable, I don’t think people would remember me as much if it wasn’t.”

Joe seems to have woven together a successful career in both acting and stand-up comedy.

Joe said: “I’ve been doing different plays and musicals for 15 years, ranging from such diverse shows as The Producers to Rosencrantz And Guildenstern Are Dead, so I will always keep my hand in with stage work as well as stand-up. I don’t have a preference, I like the fact that I can dip a toe into each of these areas, and I never get bored of doing any of them for that reason.”

Also on Joe’s career 
biography is a brave stint he completed earlier this year as a contestant on Dancing On Ice.

He said: “I hadn’t done any skating prior to the show and I found the experience physically taxing, as I got a bad case of shingles in the first couple of weeks and continued on the show with large doses of painkillers, but I still loved it.”

As to his ambitions, Joe has plenty of roles he would still like to play. He confessed: “I’d like to play Mr Cellophane in the musical Chicago!”