Scots Collegian Joe Daymond [2009-2013]
Have you heard the one about the Maori Fijian from Wainuiomata playing to sell-out crowds at SkyCity? No? Then read on….
Joe Daymond felt mediocre in his early years at Scots College. It was a big move for the boy from Wainuiomata. He felt that the bar was set high for the students and that Scots was all about excellence. “I was an ‘excellent’ student myself, but I was surrounded by boys doing better, and I wondered if I was doing enough.”
Joe says he enjoyed having high aspirations as he was competitive, and being in the Boarding House made it more competitive. “It’s made me who I am.”
He was in the 1st XV but didn’t see himself as a career rugby player, so he got involved in other activities, including debating, and was one of the top accountancy students.
As Head of Mawson House, Joe initially struggled with self-esteem, but he credits House Dean Mr Smith for encouraging him with public speaking and leading the haka. All of which increased his confidence.
After leaving school Joe went to Auckland to study Accounting & Finance because he was good at accounting and thought it was what he should do. Turns out it wasn’t. Despite his obvious competence, and a promising internship, Joe left University and returned to Wellington.
He challenged himself to work out what he really wanted to do, and decided to give Stand-up a go. Once he got over his initial nerves, he thrived.
A budding comedian doesn’t earn much. You have to get yourself in front of promoters and managers, no easy task but his entrepreneurial streak (he had a few businesses going while still at school!) came up trumps. He started writing for Radio DJs Jono & Ben and toured with Guy Williams, and received great feedback.
It was especially tough for Joe at first. For six months he cleaned caravans, waking up at 3.00am for a 3.30am start. He would work till midday, sleep, write for Jono & Ben, Stand-up till midnight, then repeat the next day.
Joe started getting noticed when he was nominated for several awards at the 2018 NZ Comedy Guild Awards including:
- Best Newcomer
- Breakthrough Artist of the Year
- Funniest Online Presence
At the same time his Social Media presence was growing. Joe committed to posting something each day during the Covid lockdown. With more people at home and online it really took off. He has more than 44,000 followers on Instagram alone.
Joe’s ‘The Crowd Work Tour’ went to Christchurch, Dunedin, Hamilton and Auckland. He is the youngest comedian to sell-out Auckland’s SkyCity Theatre two nights in a row.
Joe says, “It’s the proudest moment of my life and probably my first real break.”
Scots was lucky to have Joe as part of the Bromad festival last year. He says he loved coming back and would be happy to get involved again.
Joe describes his act as ‘inappropriate but relatable’. He doesn’t view racism as insidious, but comes from ignorance. “It’s ok to be unsure about other cultures. People are often too scared to talk about what they don’t know. It’s always ok to ask.”
His advice for students:
- You don’t need to have all the answers when you leave school. Don’t be afraid about not knowing what you want to do.
- Don’t just go to university because you think you should. Enter the work force. You’ll gain life skills and certainly find out what you don’t want to do, because you can only get the worst jobs.
- If you delay university you might save yourself a lot of time and money in the long run.
I’m very excited about Scots being co-ed and am pleased to hear that the Scots girls are settling in well. I left school having no idea how to talk to girls. Scots was single sex and rugby was very male dominated so it was a bit of a shock to get into the real world. That’s another thing work can teach you because 50% of the work force is female.