From Iceland — The Dog Day King

The Dog Day King

Published July 29, 2008

Snorri Hergill Kristjánsson up for this year's Edinburgh Fringe Festival in Reykjavík

The Dog Day King
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Snorri Hergill Kristjánsson up for this year's Edinburgh Fringe Festival in Reykjavík

Quirky Icelandic comedian Snorri Hergill Kristjánsson is here to conquer your funny bone like a Viking capturing a village. Snorri Hergill is acclaimed for achieving second place in the stand-up competition, “Iceland’s Funniest Person,” and is currently gearing up for this year’s Edinburgh Fringe Festival in August. He waxes humorously on a number of assorted topics in his set – including Jude Law and puffins(!) – while chiefly explaining the trials and tribulations of moving to the UK and explaining his national identity to a perplexed London public. “The national identity thing, you can’t help but think about it,” says Snorri. “The smallness of the country is pressed upon you; it occupies my mind.”

As such, his Icelandic heritage plays a huge role in his performance concept. He read up thoroughly on the nation’s history and named his set, Dog Day King, after the nickname of Danish adventurer, Jørgen Jørgensen, who overthrew the country for a few days in 1809. After giving his set such a badass name, he jokingly says the next thing he needs to do now is “get skinny jeans and a hipster haircut.”

When asked if it’s difficult to connect with such a wide range of people from multiple countries, he says: “I think stand-up is all about thinking fast. It doesn’t really matter where you’re from. If you can paint a picture in people’s minds of a penguin on a tricycle, you’re going to make people laugh.”

At his July 7th performance, Snorri was successfully able to keep the diverse nationalities in the room laughing in stitches. He is masterful in commanding the stage with a deft skill for threading together a hilarious collection of seemingly unrelated stories, yet at the same time keeps his material all in perspective and relatable. Additionally, he has a knack for improv, playing off of unpredicted occurrences such as glasses breaking and phones going off during his set.

His noticeable skill can be attributed to his experience (he began way back in 1993) and he’s taken his share of hard knocks. As he notes, if you can make it through stand-up comedy, “you’re one tough bastard.” Even when enduring some rough patches in his work, he is so addicted to performing, that he keeps coming back. “The difference between stand-up comedy and cocaine is that you can stop doing cocaine.”

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