The Writers’ Guild



The shortlists are announced

Well, a veritable multitude of shows have been seen, the reviews have been cast and the battles have only just begun as we can now reveal those who made the comedy shortlists.

For the main writing award, the judges will be sifting through the acts of Robert Newman, Rhod Gilbert (pictured) and Dan Tetsell with Penny Spubb’s Party and Jason Manford nominated in the joint comedy/theatre newcomer award. In this issue we describe Newman as having ‘the ability to make you feel quite stupid though happily, he never talks down to his audience’ while last issue we noted that Tetsell ‘bravely delved into his family history to create a compelling and, actually, very funny hour’s entertainment’. Due to technical difficulties, we revisited the Voice of Wales’ set but concluded that ‘to see Gilbert deliver the same material again was a pure delight’.

As for the newcomers, Manford is praised as ‘a sharp host with an engaging, effortless style and a quirky, original show’ while our writer reckoned that if Penny Spubb’s Party ‘doesn’t make you hoot and snort

with laughter, I don’t know what will’.

The winners will be announced on Tuesday 23 August and we’ll have a nice big splash on the victors in the next issue, out the following day. May the best folk win. (Brian Donaldson)

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Kevin Tomlinson COO. \y'itt'ully going against eyerything l’ringe comedy stands for. 'l'omlinson is polite. inoffensiye and eyen apologetic for all the inadyertent rude hits. L‘sing masks to adopt \arious eyeryday guises. he acts freeform scenarios from scraps of dialogue written by the audience and props collected from us during the show. 'l‘onilinson is more a ringleader than a stand-up, hut his finely - timed comic seiisihilities keeps a potentially disastrous affair on track. (David Pollock) I’lt'usuni't' ('oio‘ti‘onl. 556 6550. until 2/ slug. Ill/Slim. 17.50—18.50 ([6 [7).

Guy Browning 00.0 The ‘()t'i'ice Politics and ‘llow 'l'o' columnist is clearly playing to a home crowd. regular Visitors to his hroadshcct font of knowledge. Browning on stage. dressed in dinner suit and how tie. is a different proposition to the man on paper. In some ways he's funnier facial espi'essions. audience interaction hut with less little for Us to digest his astute ohseryations. Browning has to diiiiih down a fraction.


falling just short of the genius in print. (Kell} .»\pter) l’lt'thl/lt‘l’ (‘ourtyunl 556 6550. until 2‘/.lue. 6./0/mi. t“) [/0 (£7.50 £8.50).

Freestyle Love Supreme COO. l-"reesty le l,o\e Supreme manage effortlessly to hring B-hoy skills to play to a decidedly mixed crowd and get laughs from cyeryone. l'tillt' yocalists and two musicians take random words from the crowd and htiild them into lltiid raps and fiery choruses. some cley er. some silly. some occasionally hidden in a lloundering mumhle. Happily unpretentious. furiously energetic and damn entertaining. (.‘ylark Robertson) .-l.s.\t'mltl_\' Rooms. 226 2426'. until 2‘/.vlue. 6.50pm. [ll [/2 It‘ll) t‘ll). Miles Jupp 0... In this show. stihtitlcd lining .llon in o l/u/l. unrectinstructed uppcr~class doctrinaires like Miles Jtipp's comedy persona neyci' really get angry. since a) it's not the British way; and h) surely the ser\ ants can take care of that sort of thing. Btrt litiffs they can certainly do. liyen if the posh twat shtick is a little lahoured at times. and his

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transitions from ad lih to script somewhat discordant. this is still a corking show. (Sam llealy) ( ruler/telly. 0870 74.5 5’08}, until 28 Aug (Not 22). 8. l5pm. [9-1/0

( [7. 50- [8. 50).

Stephen K Amos 00. Featuring l()() of his fay-nitrite things. including fireworks. helping others and Jammy Dodgers. Amos reads some out in a loyely .lut'kunoiy yoiee. Bttt. like the Top It)“ shows he celebrates and mocks. it all ends up feeling a hit routine. (James Smart) (iiltli'tl Balloon li'i‘ittt. 668 [633. until 28 Aug. 9.30pm. [9 [10([8 [9).

Brendan Burke .0. In between getting to know the crowd he picks random anecdotes and gags from his set and manages a few laughs from the traditionally hack men/women. cats/dogs ohseryations. (Marissa Burgess) (’u/i" Roy'ul. 556 254‘), until 28 Aug (not 23). 10.40pm. [8 ([5).

Bill Hicks: Slight Return .0. The London homhings. the 8 and a million other stories torn frorii hysterical tahloid ohliy ion come in for the kihosh from the resurrected llicks in the hody of linglish actor (‘has liarly'. It’s all commendahly nostalgic stuff. which rightly doffs its hat to one of the true greats. (l’aul Dale) l’lt’usunt'c ('ourty'tml. 556 6550. until 2‘) Aug. 3.45,»)1. [8.50 [950(17- [8). Caesar “twins 0.. not to he impressed hy the physical strength. halance and hi'ayado of l’ahlo and Pierre ('aesar. 'l‘heir circus act-turned

lt‘s impossihlc

stage show has seyeral jaw -dropping moments of acrohatic dexterity. htit their comedy is lightweight. (Kelly Apter) :lysi'mltly' Roonts. 226 2428. until 29.411}: (not 22). 6pm. £ll.50 [12.50

it'll) [/l.50).

Jo Caulfield COO 'I‘here‘s something of the impatient mother ahoiit ('aulfield. and engaging in audience research as part of her routine giyes her off-the-cuff ability and scornful eye a chance to shine. (Katy .\lc:\tilay ) I’lt'usunt‘t' ('ourti‘to'tl. 556 6550. until 29.41in [/0 [ll (£8.50 £9.50). Alun Cochrane .00 Perhaps the tall man has set himself too high a standard. hccause his (‘omnly' wit/i .S'tul Bits doesn't quite match last year's glory. I'm not one of those journos who he reckons might change the ‘sad' for ‘had' htit his relatiy'ely routine material ahout fruit on pizzas. home furnishings and childhood trauma don't quite tly. (Brian Donaldson) l-ft/iiilturg/i ('omi'tly Room. The Tron. 226 0000. until 27xlug. 7..i’(I/mi. {8 l") ([7 [8).

Confessions of a Jingle Writer 0.. In a world of crude. rude and downright weird comedy shows. a dip into 'l’om llodge’s ahility to recreate (irieg's ‘ln the Hall of the Mountain King‘ on a dentist’s micro—drill is a pleasant way to spend time. With his tidal waye haircut and polite demuinour. the jinglesmitli is affahle company. (Katy .\lc:\ulay ) I’lt'osuiu‘t' ('oui'tyunl. 556 6550. until 2‘) glue. 4pm. £7.50 [8.50 ([6 £7).

Circus of the Future .00 (‘oil-‘ has tray elled all the way from the land of l’oothuania and landed in lidinhiirgh. Actually. it's just an e\cuse for an hour of silly sketches and smutty innuendo ahotit 'l‘atu and clowns. (Allan Radcliffe) (ii/(led Balloon 'Ii'ri'ot. 668 I633. until 28 .zlut'. 4..i’(I/mi. [8 [9/17 [8).

The Congress of Oddities .0. Against a hackdrop of aged British finery. (‘alaniine and ('hlamydia work their jolly

hockey sticks and gormless tart characters well. providing comical hawdiy and creepy mute antics courtesy of the hiscuit-eyed lady. (Katy .\lc:\ulay) l’leusunt‘e ('ourty'ut‘tl. 556 6550. llltlll 29.1w. /0.-l5/)m. [7.501850 ([6 [7).

Jamie Douglas 00. .-\ tihreglass ’hunker' seats three at a squeeze. who watch the tale of fighter ace ‘(iinger‘ Douglas. his gal Kitty Flanders. and the caddiin peg—leg Douglas Bader on a computer screen. The real Douglas ptits himself into the IS-miniite sketch yia a live camera feed. Amusing fluff. (Rohin l’lt’ll.\'(lll('(’ ( 'ourtyui'tl. 556 6550. until 2‘) Aug. 2.30pm. .i’pm. 330an 4pm. £2.50. Dave Fulton 000 Mars for the last year and need a summary

lf you'ye heen on

of eyerything that‘s going on in the world. you could do worse than see Daye litilton. llis cynical eagle eye ranges (wet eyery'thing at dizzying speed. (Rohin Lee) Assembly Rooms. 226 2428. until 2‘) xlll‘t’. //./5/)m. [ll [/2 (U0 t‘ll).

Genius for Dummies 000 This talctited young comedy couple offer tip a delightfully idiotic. rough and ready spread of characters that charm and amuse in no small measure. :\ low -key' gem of tinchallenging. unpretentious laughs aplenty. (.‘ylark lidmtindson) l’lt'usuni‘e (‘ourty'urtl 556 6550. until 2‘) glue (not 22). l/im. [6.50 £7.51)i£5 [6).

Tom Gleeson COO (ileeson's comic rhythm is slow htit the .'\tts.sle army which has united to cheer their home talent doesn't seem to mind. Back-of-heyond fartn life proyes a fertile

Nice guy

topic. not least for the enjoyahle reyersing \an impressions. (Katy .\lc.'\tilay) (ii/ilt'tl Balloon li't‘iot. 668 I633. until 28 slug.

8. l5/mt. [8. 50 w. 50 417.5(2— [8.50).

If My Life Hadn’t Turned Out Differently COO Jaryis ('ocker and Simon Armitage will recognise Nathan l’enlington's whimsical

l-ans of .‘ylorrissey.

poetic eyocations from north of the Watford (iap. He points otit he’s not a comedian. hut there's humour which touches the same place. and he has the talent with words to successfully open his horizons in future. (Rohin l’lt’llwlllt‘l‘ Home. 556 6550. until 2‘) slug. 4pm. [7.51) [8 ([6 [6.50). Stewart Lee 00. pushing houndaries for l7 years now htit litts heeri

hecoming a pariah for the (‘hristian right has takcti a toll. lle's focussing on a stomach-chtirning monologue that makes a significant political point htit lacks the energy to carry tis along. (.‘ylark Rohertson) l 'Iltlt’l‘llt’lll. 0870 745 3085’. until 28 Aug, 8.40pm. £9.50 U0.5()(f8 [9).

Brian Longwell 0.. What the world needs more of are nontnotiyational speakers. Blokes in suits who tell you how to do it wrong c\‘ery time. or how to cock tip properly. Brian Longwell's your chap. with his primitiye. hand-draw n transparencies and one-man hrainstorming sessions. (Rohin Lee) littlty‘ lit'l/y', 0870 745 3083'. until 28;litg. 7pm. [8 Nil? [8). Greg McHugh CC. Whateyer you do. don‘t mention that Mcllugh looks a hit like l’atrick Kielty (sorry). ’l'hisamiahlc young man's show is about significant