Meet Karla O'Brien: The Irish Trans Comedian Breaking Barriers

As well as being a stand up comedian, the 24 year-old has also spoken at Inspirefest about her journey.

Young trans woman Karla O'Brien standing in a sleeveless dress standing beside a brick wall

Karla O’Brien, a young Irish trans woman, has recently begun to take Dublin’s stand up comedy scene by storm.

The comedian featured in an RTÉ news piece, where one of her live gigs was recorded. She spoke of how she always wanted to do comedy but felt like she had nothing to say, but since her transition, she realised she now had a platform, and a message to send through comedy.

In a hugely gutsy, and pretty hilarious move, she even managed to get a sly dig in when she joked: “Why do people from RTÉ want a transgender writer to talk about a subject they know nothing about in comedy? It’s not like they’d get a comedy writer to talk about a subject they know nothing about, like transgender issues.”

It was even more hilarious that RTÉ showed it!

Karla initially made quite the impact back in 2016 when she received a standing ovation after delivering a speech at Inspirefest.

Speaking about her journey, Karla says: “I don’t think ‘transitioning’ fully encompasses what I’ve gone through. I don’t feel I’ve changed as a person, just accepted the woman I wanted to be. The biggest change of all is that I’m happy. I wasn’t always, but I am now.”

Last year, Karla wrote a piece for Siliconrepublic where she discussed the reaction to her video. “People reached out to me from around the world after my talk was shared on social media. So many of them in the same position I was – on hidden Facebook accounts, reaching out from secret email addresses. It made me realise that the online world was chock-full of people living a life they couldn’t in another medium.”

While it may be only the early days of her stand up career, we’re looking forward to seeing a lot more from this young comedian. In the meantime, check out Karla’s social media for more of her brand of humour.

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