mon 18/10/2021

Comedy Reviews

Jason Manford, London Palladium review - lockdown laughs and feelgood fun

Veronica Lee

Tickets for Jason Manford's Like Me went on sale in 2019 but the tour had to be put on hold as events unavoidably detained him at home. "I hope you haven't gone off me in that time – it does happen," he said. He needn't have worried as the Palladium crowd were as delighted as he was to be in a theatre, having a laugh.

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Blithe Spirit, Harold Pinter Theatre review - an amusing, if dated, revival of the Coward classic

Gary Naylor

We’re in an agreeable drawing room with an author, Charles Condomine, who is looking forward to having a bit of fun with a local spiritualist, Madame Arcati, whom he has invited over for an evening séance.

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Anuvab Pal, Soho Theatre review - Empire and Bollywood collide

Veronica Lee

Anuvab Pal may be a new name to some UK audiences (although many will know him from the global satirical podcast The Bugle), but he is well known in his native India.

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Olga Koch, Soho Theatre review - personal, political and playful

Veronica Lee

Olga Koch – born in Russia to ethnic German parents, multilingual and now living in London – might fit into the group that Theresa May once dismissed as “citizens of nowhere”, whatever that phrase means.

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Dead Ringers Live, London Wonderground review - impressionists on great form

Veronica Lee

Here's a treat for those missing Dead Ringers (created by Bill Dare) as it takes a break on Radio 4.

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Edinburgh Fringe 2021: Comedy Allstars, Underbelly review - depleted festival kicks off

Veronica Lee

At the risk of stating the bleeding obvious, this year's Fringe is a much smaller beast than normal. In the face of Covid restrictions, uncertainty about when they would end and the limitations on international travel, this year many performers are staying away. There are 755 shows at 118 venues across the city, compared to 3,841 in 323 venues in 2019, the last time the Fringe was held.

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Wonderville, Palace Theatre review - magic and illusion family show

Veronica Lee

Variety is a form of entertainment most usually seen on Saturday night television these days, but Wonderville is an attempt to bring it back into the West End.

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Bo Burnham: Inside, Netflix review - a masterpiece about lockdown angst

Veronica Lee

Some people perfected their banana loaf or sourdough bread during lockdown. Others tried to learn a new language or how to play an instrument. Bo Burnham produced this masterpiece.

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Comedy Shindig, Melbourne Hall review - Jason Manford headlines opening night

Veronica Lee

What a great idea Just the Tonic's Comedy Shindig is; outdoor gigs at lovely locations under a huge awning - so who cares if the British summer turns out to be a bit wet this year? The season kicked off – in beautiful weather – in the grounds of Melbourne Hall near Derby, where a sunken Victorian walled garden provided a natural amphitheatre. Chuck in a barbecue and a bar, and it was a perfect way to enjoy an evening of comedy.

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Jimmy Carr, Palace Theatre review - rape gags and risible claims

Veronica Lee

What to make of Jimmy Carr? He’s a fantastic gag writer and experienced stand-up who has made a hugely successful career on television. And yet... as Terribly Funny makes clear, you have to share what he calls his dark and edgy humour - or, as he has it: “Cunts are a key demographic for me” - to find it mirth-making.

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