Star rating: ***
Sunday 1st February 2015
The second show of the year from Compass Comedy at Compass Theatre had another big line up of 9 comedians of varying levels of experience playing to a pretty full house. It was a gender balanced, very multi-cultural, international show. Very equal opportunities. Four women and five men on the line up. Very rare indeed to see so many women on one stand up comedy line up. I do hope no laws were broken in the process!
The show was very well compered by Spanish comedian Sonia Aste, who kept proceedings ticking over nicely with good audience banter of the friendly, non-threatening sort audiences like. It meant the audience was at ease and comfortable engaging with her and had little fear of being embarrassed
First act on was Murray Porter. His set got the night off to a good start with plenty of laughter reverberating around the venue thanks to his performance. His burglary joke proved burglars can be amusing (hmmm!)
Arielle from the Ivory Coast was hilarious, with a very nice line in original jokes on familiar subjects of relationships, lack of them and made herself the butt of her jokes about being a big woman trying to get into and sustain relationships. The audience enjoyed the straight talking, dirty talk from Ariele. She’s the new kid on the block and is definitely one to watch.
Pete Jee is an excellent gag meister who gave us side splittingly funny, original puns and gags. He reminded me of top TV comedians Milton Jones and Stewart Francis and I see no reason why he should make it onto TV himself. In an era when many stand up comedians focus on anecdotes, rather than straight jokes, it was heartening to see Pete coming out with plenty of pure, straightforward jokes.
I loved Nathan Wilcock’s shadow boxing joke. It took a bit of sparring to get there, but the punch line was a knock out. The mum’s advice one was a cracker too. I enjoyed these one liner, pause for thought, type jokes.
Overall though I found Nathan Wilcox to be plain weird. He was running around the theatre like a madman. He cemented this view with his i-phone anger skit.
Oli Bettesworth got off to an awkward start asking a man sitting on his own where his friends were. Moving swiftly on, he deftly handled this by self-deprecatingly asking the audience to blame him, see him as the bad guy here. The audience member was fine with it though and engaged in friendly banter with Oli and other comedians on the night.
His Facebook routine was far too OTT however. So animated was he that I thought he was going to burst a blood vessel at any point. It was just out and out weird as he became increasingly angry, loud and demented over nothing much whatsover. If it was on the theatre stage in a play, it would not have been out of place as a response to a tragedy, but as a comedian at a family show it didn’t come across well. Oli may be looking to create his stage persona and niche but needs to tone it down a lot.
Even though she didn’t look it, Sam Jones introduced herself as a second generation Pakistani. She created very funny material from her cultural background and her career teaching English to foreigners.
With 9 comedians on the line up, including 5 men, it was interesting that she was the only one doing football jokes. Sam Jones hit the back of the net a good few times with her strikes and with her superb performance was a sure fire contender for woman of the match at this comedy gig.
Fred is a much more, how can we say, mature man, compared to the other performers. He was good, but acted very weird (a theme of the night you may have noticed), but had some decent jokes for the Compass Comedy audience.
All the way from the US of A, (new Hampshire to be precise) the headliner for the night Robyn Perkins opened by informing the audience she had recently climbed Mount Kilimanjaro and lost 7 pairs of knickers in the process. How that happened I don’t know and whether she had any spares she wasn’t letting on!
Climbing mountains seems to be the in thing these days for comedians as Eddie Nestor and Robbie Gee will be in July for their Silimanjaro challenge to raise money and awareness for charities.
Robyn had a maths obsession and weaved this expertly into her set with her stories about the London Underground and sexual relations!
She was OK, had a number of good gags and interacted pretty well with the audience, but was too loud and all American for my liking. Again, another comedian who just needed to find their level and tone it down a little.
Overall this was a very good night of comedy from a group of up and coming comedians , mixed in with more experienced talent. A mixture of the weird, wonderful and original best sums it up. This was the best and highest attended show at Compass Comedy to date. I look forward to seeing many of these comedians again. Well done to all involved.
Last month we announced our Top 10 Up and Coming Comedians to look out for in 2015. It featured four who had performed at Compass Comedy in 2014. You never know, perhaps some of the above comedians will feature in our 2016 list.
© Tiemo Talk of the Town
The next Compass Comedy show is on Sunday 8th March 2015.
Headline act – President Obonjo. Compere: Peter White. Featuring Mandy Dassa, Aaron Meszaros, Peter Ford, Victoria Lessina, Guiness Wheatley, Jack Brooks and Rory O’Keefe.
Starts 8pm. Ends 10pm. £4 Advanced. £5 on the door.
Donations to the cause can be made on-line here
After recovering from Cancer BBC broadcaster, actor & comedian Eddie Nestor decided to work his way through his bucket list and enlisted the help of his best mate, wife, manager & his fitness instructor with whom he is going to undertake the climb of a lifetime – Kilimanjaro in July 2015.
#Silimanjaro will be organising a series of fun events in the lead up to the climb in order to maximise funds raised and to raise awareness about the 4 selected charities. Afro-Caribbean Leukaemia Trust (ACLT), McMillan Cancer Trust, Rudolf Walker Foundation and Urban Synergy.
African-Caribbean Leukaemia Trust- ACLT
McMillan Cancer Trust – McMillan
Rudolf Walker Foundation – Rudolf Walker
Urban Synergy – Urban Synergy