FAMILY AFFAIR: Newcastle comedian Andrew Milos and Knights star Nathan Ross sharing a laugh. Picture: Simone De Peak ANYONE who’smet Knights utility back Nathan Ross or watched one of his interviews knows he has the gift of the gab.
Articulate, wittyand blessed with innate enthusiasm the “Ross Dog” isn’t your average rugby league footballer. It’smade him a cult hero among Knightsfans.
Unsurprisingly the 29-year-old has designs on a post-football career in the media. He’s already been a regular guest on Fox Sports’ Matty John Show and The Professor’s Second Year Syndrome.
But instead of merely waiting for opportunities to land in his lap, Ross is building his media profile at a local level through the Newcastle-based Big Dog Pod comedy nights.
After appearing on the inaugural Big Dog Pod atThe Press Bookhouse in January, Ross returns for the monthly comedy showcase’s Christmas show on Saturday at The Happy Wombat.
“Football is my main focus at the moment, but once football is done I would like to find a place in the media somewhere,” Ross says.
“A lot of football players would say that, so fingers crossed I cantransition into it.
“Platforms like this are a great way to show people you can talk, you can be articulate, you can be funny and you’re not just a footballer.”
Big Dog Pod is the brain child of Newcastle comedian Andrew Milos, who is the cousin of Ross’ partner Nikea Jones.
The show involvesMilos and Ross interviewing comedians and sportspeople and basically bantering among themselves.
Comedians Jen Carnovale, John Cruickshank, Luke Joseph Ryan, and maybe a Knights playeror two, will be guests on Saturday.
Milos and Ross have a natural chemistry. During their Newcastle Herald photo shoot on Wednesday at The Happy Wombat they had Weekender laughing along as Milos ribbed Ross about his misplaced faith in his own surfing ability and his affectionfor Speedos.
Ross says the show works because it’s unscripted and merelyamplifies their natural relationship.
“We go out for dinner with the family and it’s just straight away like bang, bang, bang and the time passes,” Ross says.
FUNNY FEAST: Andrew Milos and Nathan Ross are usually the life of the party at family dinners. Picture: Simone De Peak
“Andrew and I have a really good relationship and it breaks up the night.
“Family dinners can get pretty boring, you know what I mean, so we tend to nestle ourselves down one end of the table and we laugh and spin jokes and hang banter on each other.”
Ross says he’s always been a fan of comedy movies, but he’sonly a relative newcomer to the world of stand-up.
However, he has quickly identified the cultural benefits of growing the stand-up scene in Newcastle’s night-time economy.
“I think with the way Newcastle is evolving as a place now, it’s something we need,” he says.
“We haven’t seen that before now.
“It’s big in Sydney, it’s even bigger in Melbourne and I think it’s starting to grow.
“It started off with myself, Aaron Gocs, JuliaWilson and Isaac Butterfield in a book store that might have fit 30 people, now it’s selling out 120 tickets every show.
“It shows how much the Newcastle social scene wants it. It’s calling for it almost.”
Saturday night’s show will also be recorded for a podcast.
It’spart of Milos’ plan to regularly release podcasts with Ross to tap into the increasingly-popular medium.
“We’ve been thinking for a while about ways we can work together because obviously he’s always on the Matty Johns Show, so he’s trying to get into that stuff for after his career,” Milos says.
“I love comedy so much and I’m so ingrained in it at the moment and we’ve been thinking of ways to help each other out.”
Milos’ monthly Big Dog Pod comedy nights have created a niche in the Newcastle entertainment market, regularly selling out The Happy Wombat.
Milos is also expanding. On December 13 the Prince of Wales Hotel will host Tommy Dassalo,Sam Taunton andNick Capper and Neel Kolhatkar will playThe Edwards on December 21.
The next step in Milos’grand plan to get the city laughing is tocreate the first ever Newcastle Comedy Festival.
Modeled on the popular festivals in Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane and Perth, Milos hopes to either launch Newcastle’s comedic showcase in May 2019at the end of the n circuit or next December at the beginning of the season.
“I’m in talks with comedians every week and there’s never been a comedy festival in Newcastle andI’ve delved through the history with some of the older guys and there’s never been an attempt at it,” he says.
“I’ve had guys like Rove [McManus] and Wil Anderson on my podcast and for them to come to Newcastle they have to do their own show at Belmont 16s, Lizotte’s or the Civic Theatre.
“But to have a twoor three-day festival, something realistic, it would either be late next year orin 2019.”
Big Dog PodChristmas Show kicks off 8pmSaturday at The Happy Wombat. Tickets on sale atstickytickets老域名出售.au.