- ▼ February (7)
Thursday, 24 February 2011
Giggle Beats Guest Blog
North East comedy is experiencing somewhat of a renaissance at the moment. The emergence of comedy clubs such as The Grinning Idiot, The Laughing Penguin, Hilarity Bites and the forthcoming Stand Comedy Club in Newcastle provide up and coming comics with many a platform to showcase and develop their material in the region; the result is a plethora of young, talented comedians from the North East, and some of those acts, like Kai Humphries, Carl Hutchinson and John Whale, will be travelling to Scotland next month for the annual Glasgow Comedy Festival.
Andrew Dipper, editor of comedy website GiggleBeats.co.uk, guides you through some of the best Northern acts on offer this spring:
Tuesday 5 April, 8pm, Old Fruitmarket.
Perhaps the most successful Northern comedian in the country at the moment, South Shields born Sarah Millican has sold out her show faster than anyone else at this year’s festival and it’s easy to see why. Thanks largely to her cult following and the everywoman feel to her humour, Millican’s now a regular fixture on comedy programmes such as Michael McIntyre’s Comedy Roadshow, and those of you lucky enough to see her on 5 April are in for a real treat.
Sunday 10 April, 8.30pm, Blackfriars Basement
Like Millican, Kai Humphries has experienced an astounding amount of success in such a short space of time. Humphries recently turned professional after just under two years in comedy and runs the monthly Punch-Drunk Comedy Club in Cramlington. He’s a natural entertainer who has a clear passion for his comedy and his debut solo show, Evolution, garnered mainly positive reviews at last year’s Fringe. Kai Humphries joins Sean Grant for one night only on 10 April.
Wednesday 30 March, 9.30pm, Stand Comedy Club
Jason Cook has been one of my favourite comedians for a long time now. Recently nominated for best compere in the Chortle awards, Cook is at ease with audience interaction but is also a superb storyteller. If you like your comedy with charm, poignancy and a little bit of silliness then Jason Cook is your man, and you can see him for an hour at the Stand Comedy Club on 30 March.
CARL HUTCHINSON & JOHN WHALE
The Triumphant Return of Jimmy & Jackie, Friday 25 March, 7.30pm, West
I watched Carl Hutchinson perform quite recently and he’s came such a long way over the past few years. Hutchinson began comedy in 2006 and since then has won countless competitions and awards – he’s another of my favourite comedians, and you can read my interview with Carl here too if you like.
A lot of up and coming comedians try their hand at deadpan comedy but very few enjoy the success John Whale has experienced. Naturally Whale’s been likened to Stewart Lee in the past, but you can see why – his material is well-carved, dark and there’s a confidence to his act that’s simply infectious. He’s one of the less experienced Northern acts on offer at this year’s festival, but he and Carl Hutchinson are more than worth your time and money.
Sunday 20 March, 8.30pm, Blackfriars Basement
Perhaps 2011 is Chris Ramsey’s year. Having recently toured with both Al Murray and fellow 2011 festival star Russell Kane, South Shields comedian Ramsey is a man in demand; so much so his website even crashed after his recent appearance on Comedy Rocks alongside Jason Manford. If you missed him on TV he's performing alongside Gareth Richards on 20 March, and you'll probably be seeing a lot more of him in the near future.
THE GINGE, THE GEORDIE & THE GEEK
Sunday 27 March, 8pm, Tron Theatre
Sketch comedy troupe The Ginge, The Geordie & The Geek had a very successful Fringe and recently supported Michael McIntyre at the Childish Things charity gig. You can read my interview with them here, and catch them in Glasgow on 27 March.
Giggle Beats was founded by Andrew Dipper and Richard Milburn in June 2010 as a means of promoting comedy talent performing in the North of England. On www.gigglebeats.co.uk you’ll find reviews of some of the best (and worst!) acts working the circuit from their team of comedy enthusiasts, interviews with some of the top comics in the country and everything you need to know about the region’s comedy scene.