After meeting with an American comic called Becky Donohue I headed out and caught Jason John Whitehead. JJ is still a young comic but has been gigging regularly for nine years around the world and so is a seasoned pro at the same time. He’s a capable act and a charming stage presence offering an entertaining show simply entitled Joker – with some nice stories sketching out some of his early involvement with comedy.
Tim Minchin played a big room really well. Musical comedy isnt often my favourite thing but when its done this well its great. I was warmed from the start by the site of a grand piano onstage. Visually I really enjoy watching stand up and am regularly struck by how beautiful I find the simple sight of a lone mic stand and microphone on a simple black stage properly lit and viewed over the heads of an audience. A big black shiny grand piano is an even more striking sight. Minchin is a unique stage presence and has a remarkable facility for getting cogent and rich language into his lyrics, not to mention being a fine pianist.
A stroll over to The Stand – an absolutely top quality comedy club (all year round) I caught Dave Longley who freely confesses to having had a bit of a melt down at the Fringe last year, but has returned guns blazing with a positive attitude and a show packed full of good ideas and daft, provocative silliness. Nice blend of rigorous thinking and a childish appreciation for rude antics.
Spent the rest of the evening drinking with Lee from GAG Reflex – an excellent comedy agency based in Manchester and representing a good number of the best acts in the North West. Hooked up again with Reggie to head back and stopped for a pint in The Scotsman, which conveniently opens at six.