COMEDY: Surrey-bound Steve Smith, now 70, still peddles jokes as bumbling handyman Red Green (video)

Hamilton-based actor brings ‘I’m Not Old, I’m Ripe’ tour to Bell Performing Arts Centre

Hamilton’s Steve Smith as Red Green

SURREY — Steve Smith’s tour schedule this fall looks like something meant for a 30-something entertainer, not a man who celebrated his 70th birthday last Christmas.

But here comes Smith, suitcase in hand, for another round of theatre shows in which he plays bumbling handyman Red Green.

The “I’m Not Old, I’m Ripe” tour began in the U.S. last spring, picks up again this month in Phoenix and then rolls across the border into B.C., with a show date on Monday, Sept. 19 at Surrey’s Bell Performing Arts Centre. From there, the trip continues across Canada until the last week of October.

Smith is in good health for a man his age, apparently.

“Yeah, I got up on the hoist and everything, and I’m good to go,” he said about his last visit with his doctor. “Normally I don’t go to the doctor, other than that checkup I had. Heck, I know I’m dying, he’ll just tell me whether I’m ahead of schedule, on schedule or behind schedule, that’s all.”

On the phone from his home in Hamilton, Smith spoke to the Now for a third time in five years, matching the number of shows he’ll have done at Surrey’s Bell soft-seater since 2011.

That year, he got the itch to bring his brand of hoser-ish comedy to live audiences, and he’s been at it ever since.



“I finished the last tour (dubbed “How to Do Everything… From the Man Who Should Know”) and the promoter wanted me to sign on for another tour but I said no, I’m going to take some time off, take off all of 2015, and see if I want to do this again,” Smith recalled. “I wanted to maybe do some writing and see if I have some things to say again on a stage somewhere, rather than make that commitment and then have nothing, or little, to say. Turns out I did have some things to say, so it really came from that creative side.”

The current tour is an autobiographical one for Red Green, who aims to detail “the twists, the turns, his insights, wisdom and, of course, the people he’s met along the way,” according to the press release.

Red Green, for those not familiar with the bearded man in plaid, was a fixture on TV from 1991 until 2006. The comedy show’s run included 300 episodes of sketches and segments focusing on Green and fellow Possum Lodge members.

With the television show now a decade in the rear-view mirror, Smith said he has no desire to ever do TV again.

“I’m a backward person, I guess, because a lot of people go to television to get away from live performances, and that’s not me,” he said. “TV seems so much more contrived, and you just can’t have your live show feel contrived, or look out.”

Of course, clips from the old TV show continue to be clicked on websites like YouTube, on which the RedGreenTV channel boasts more than 68,000 subscribers.

“We do a clip of the week and we send those to our Facebook followers, the 631,000 of them we have, so that picks up a lot of views,” Smith elaborated.

“It’s interesting because I stopped doing the television show 10 years ago but the brand awareness has never been higher, because of things like that, the internet. But the jokes get old, right? The reality is, Clinton jokes aren’t all that funny anymore.”

Tickets start at $61.35, plus fees, for the Red Green show in Surrey. For details, visit or call the box office, 604-507-6355.


Just Posted

Surrey councillor defends SOGI 123 stance after resigning from AutismBC

Laurie Guerra stands by her opposition to SOGI 123 resource as backlash over meeting comes to a head

PHOTOS: Hockey history in Surrey as Team India comes to play

Squad played its very first game in Canada on Tuesday against Surrey Falcons

Proposed coal project for Fraser Surrey Docks back in court

It could be months before the federal appeal court renders a decision

Minor injuries for firefighter struck outside South Surrey fire hall

Minor injuries for firefighter struck outside South Surrey fire hall

Surrey to hear news on Olympic softball qualifier bid next week

Decision, originally expected in September, was delayed by World Baseball Softball Confederation

VIDEO: Amazon to split second HQ between New York, Virginia

Official decision expected later Tuesday to end competition between North American cities to win bid and its promise of 50,000 jobs

Fear of constitutional crisis escalates in U.S.; Canadians can relate

Some say President Donald Trump is leading the U.S. towards a crisis

B.C.-based pot producer Tilray reports revenue surge, net loss

Company remains excited about ‘robust’ cannabis industry

Canada stands pat on Saudi arms sales, even after hearing Khashoggi tape

Khashoggi’s death at Saudi Arabia’s consulate in Istanbul further strained Riyadh’s already difficult relationship with Ottawa

Feds pledge money for young scientists, but funding for in-house research slips

Canada’s spending on science is up almost 10 per cent since the Liberals took office, but spending on in-house research is actually down

Stink at B.C. school prompts complaints of headaches, nausea

Smell at Abbotsford school comes from unauthorized composting operation

Disabled boy has ‘forgiven’ bullies who walked on him in stream, mom says

A Cape Breton teen who has cerebral palsy was told to lie in a stream as other kids walked over him

Vancouver man must pay $22,000 after breaking strata rules

Peter Gordon took his fight over his rented condo to the civil resolution tribunal, but lost

B.C. cheese linked to 5 E. coli cases

People are asked to throw out or return ‘Qualicum Spice’ cheese

Most Read