HE’S the self-proclaimed science geek who asks questions of the experts the rest of us daren’t.
And Robin Ince has made it into a comedy tour which brings the stand-up to the LBT next Saturday.
His Happiness Through Science tour asks ‘Can you be happy and rational?’
And to help him discover the answers he’s looked at science – and has been lucky enough to question his friend and TV physicist Brian Cox, who he co-presents BBC4 radio show The Infinite Monkey Cage with.
Robin told the Examiner: “Happiness Through Science is simply asking if you can really be happy thinking scientifically, throwing away the myths and looking at things rationally.
“I spend a lot of my time doing shows about science and I hope I’ve found the reasons to prop up my argument.
“I’m lucky in that I’ve been able to work with scientists like Brian Cox and ask question after question.”
Science isn’t usually a hot topic for comedians, but Robin Ince has changed that.
“I’m looking at every subject in the universe, that’s what science has allowed me to do.”
In a frenetic 90 minutes, Robin discusses infinity, Schrodinger’s cat, the evolutionary disadvantage of cannibalism, Richard Feynman and as many things that exist in the known universe that he can fit into the time.
It is a celebration of the human imagination and where it has got us.
Where an interest in science has got Robin is to be named a recent winner of the prestigious Sony Gold Radio Award for his radio show with Brian Cox.
The duo, Robin admits, are like chalk and cheese where science is concerned. Robin and his four-year-old son are embarking on their very own ‘sky at night’ project having bought a telescope. Brian is a lecturer at Manchester University who has made science and the stars almost fashionable.
“I’m that idiot who is always asking questions,” he added. “Sometimes Brian who will say ‘how can you really not understand that?’ when I ask him to explain something again.
“I loved science at school but there became parts which weren’t as captivating so I left it behind.
“I’m not trained or clever enough to stand on stage and baffle people, so I think people can relate to the questions I ask of the subject.
“The show is a bit like a mix tape of songs by all different artists, it touches on a few scientific subjects and I hope people may go away and pick up a book and discover more about the subjects for themselves.”
Happiness Through Science has, like nature, evolved itself since Robin began touring with it last September and his show has proved so popular it was extended into 2012.
Having been on tour for some time, home is questionable: “Sometimes it feels like Crewe Railway Station because every train changes there and I’ve spent so much time there.
“But in reality it is about 40 miles out of London. Whenever I get three or four days off I love to be there and do nothing.
“But I’m in a very lucky position to be doing a job I love, which I cannot complain about.”
It’s not the first time Robin has appeared at the LBT before. He is also the owner of the James Mason Home DVD, where the Hollywood actor returned home for a guided tour on film.
“I feel like I know Huddersfield well having seen that, I might dig it out and bring it up with me,” Robin added.
A love of live shows keeps him busy, but his rival passion is radio.
“With radio you can have an idea and go away and develop it and make the best of it. With TV you have many other people submitting ideas, I don’t mind failure bit I like to fail on my own.”
See Robin Ince at the LBT, on Saturday, April 21. Tickets are £13 and £11 from the theatre box office on 01484 430528 / www.thelbt.org.