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19th Oct 2015

“I got my willy out in a monastery for a joke”: Al Porter spins JOE’s Tombola of Truth

Paul Moore

Ireland’s fastest rising comic star will leave you in stitches.

The Vodafone Comedy Carnival arrives in Galway next week with the likes of Dylan Moran, Rich Hall, Phil Jupitus, David McSavage, Nina Conti, Jason Byrne and our own Eric Lalor set to play the city from Tuesday 20th- Monday 26th.

But one of the most popular draws will be an 22-year-old Irish comedian – Al Porter.

The Tallaght man has had a year to remember, a memorable highlight being his three sold-out shows at Vicar Street, so we decided to catch up with him to talk about what the ride is like in Galway, naked comedy gigs, getting your lad out in a monastery and what it’s like to be the Irish Liberace.

Al Porter spins  JOE’s Tombola of Truth…


How excited are you to play Galway?

I’m so excited because Galway is lovely but it’s also a great bloody place for the ride! I mean you have NUIG and that’s just fu**ing full of gorgeous students, plus it’s real arty. Galway’s sort of got all the artistic talent in the country and we’re just sort of f**ked here in Dublin!

Have you ever been naked in public?

I did a gig naked in Santa Ponsa, not exactly something that my agent had booked!

Weird as it sounds, I was over there for a lads weekend with about 20 guys from Ballymun that were aged 45-50 and I was the youngest and gayest one in the bar.

The place was called ‘The Auld Triangle’, they recognised my voice and asked me to do a gig in the venue a few hours later. I arrived absolutely rat-arsed drunk, in one of those mankini’s and by the end of the gig, all the women were shouting ‘Al, Al! Off off!’.

Oh yeah, I also got my willy out in a monastery for a joke. It’s ok though because I was close to becoming a priest at one point of my life!

Good Friday Service in Chicago

What is your go-to joke, clean or dirty?

It’s a very clean one actually. ‘If I’m not in bed by 11, I’m going home’. It’s just cute, funny and something that I always say if I’m out and have had a few gargles.

What’s the best or worst chat-up line that you’ve ever heard?

The worst was a fella who said to me in Tipperary, ‘mammy doesn’t know that I’m gay but I can still ride you in the shed’. The next person that I spoke to about this was David McSavage. I remember the two of us just wet ourselves laughing and we even planned to write a whole musical around this theme of sexual frustration in rural Ireland.

That’s the kind of thing that Patrick Kavanagh used to write about and I swear if Luke Kelly was still around then he would be writing song about that also!

The best chat-up line is probably ‘Are You Al Porter? I don’t think you’re funny but I’ll still take you home’.

General view of a Tipperary flag 30/5/2010

What’s the weirdest dream you ever had?

I’ve had dreams where I’m Gay Byrne and Ryan Tubridy. I’ve also had dreams when I’m on David Letterman’s show and I forget all of my material.

The weirdest one though was when I was doing panto. I had this strange dream that I was a pony in a pantomime but I couldn’t talk to Keith Duffy and Twink.

Ryan Tubridy RTE

Karaoke song of choice?

I do a few. I always used to do ‘There Are Worse Things I Could Do’ form Grease but lately I do a swing version of ‘Creep’. I’m one of those people who if I’m not on stage, you’ll find me close to one trying to get back on.

Do you have a celebrity free pass?

When I’m in a relationship, I like to negotiate with my partner that other people are allowed to join our happy team! Usually I ask the person that I’m with if I CAN BE USED as other people’s celebrity free pass! I’ve totally lost the run of myself, I’m like the Irish Liberace!

Who in your opinion is the most Irish person alive?

David McSavage because he’s wracked with guilt, very mischievous, very funny, an ugly looking fu**er, really unhappy but everyone loves him!

First crush?

This might sound odd but it’s Ryan from The O.C. I actually found a diary entry from when I was 11 and it read ‘watching the OC tonight, had a weird feeling watching Ryan… (dot, dot, dot).

Little did I know that my career would lie in the dot, dot, dot!

Ryan OC

Who would play you in your biopic if this made?

I’m too young for a biopic but if it was made 30 years later, I’d probably ask Karl Spain to lose some weight and go full method actor.

What can everyone expect when they see you at Galway?

The show keeps on changing wherever we go around Ireland. It’s the same show that sold out at Vicar Street and Edinburgh but it’s more polished and has a bit more colour. I can’t wait to bring it to Galway.

People can expect to see everything that they’ve ever heard about me, from stories about when I was going to join the priesthood to sexual mishaps and everything in between.

The show is very light and I want people to leave my show in exactly the same way that a 70-year-old woman leaves after she sees Mamma Mia. I want to be a 22-year-old Mamma Mia!

LISTEN: You Must Be Jokin’ with Aideen McQueen – Faith healers, Coolock craic and Gigging as Gaeilge