Cardinal Burns with dog

Seb Cardinal is one half of sketch comedy duo Cardinal Burns, who have ridden off the back of two successful TV series into a national tour, stopping off at Lincoln’s Drill Hall tomorrow (3 October).

He took a break from doing his accounts to talk to The Linc about their tour and how their TV work, which grabbed the public’s attention, translates onto stage.

Cardinal Burns with dog
Seb Cardinal and Dustin Demri-Burns play a variety of characters in their stage show, which comes to Lincoln on Friday evening (Image courtesy of Ben Lyttelton)

“It’s a mixture of the popular characters and sketches that we’ve got from the TV show, and then stuff that we’ve been doing live for a while that didn’t make it into the show because it’s better live,” he explained. “It’s almost a ‘best of’ from the last few years.

“It’s quite anarchic, even chaotic, but the characters are well-observed and the situations we take them in are quite surreal. It can be a little bit dark in places, but mostly very silly.”

His partner-in-laughs is Dustin Demri-Burns, and they play almost all the characters on stage during their show. “We thought about having a support act in between sketches to give us bigger changes, but when we tried that some of the energy dipped a little bit, because you have to keep adjusting to different people.”

The pair are coming to Lincoln as part of their first UK tour, which Seb claims is “all good so far”. Yet it might be their final sketch show for a while, as they’re embarking on a proposed new TV project unlike anything they’ve done before – a sitcom.

“We’ve been working on a sitcom because we wanted to have a change,” he said. “At the moment, the next thing we’ll do will probably be completely different. But who knows, we might go back to a sketch show.

“As it’s early days, though, we can’t really give anything away – we’re under contract not to.”

He admits, though, that the sketches they performed in Edinburgh and on their E4 and Channel 4 series were a good starting point for the comedy duo. “Sketches, for a lot of comedians, are a stepping off point; that’s where you start. It’s a really great way to learn the craft of comedy writing and performing.

Enthusiasm for the new project is high, Seb continues: “It really excites us to work on longer narratives though, and in the future we’d like to make films, but at the same time we still love sketches – you get to have new ideas, you don’t have to stick to any kind of formula and be as free or silly or clever as you like. It’s kind of liberating.”

As the interview draws to a close, Seb decides it’s his turn to ask a question: “Where’s a good place to go drinking in Lincoln?”

Cardinal Burns are performing at the Lincoln Drill Hall on 3 October at 8pm as part of the Lincoln Comedy Festival.