The Comedy Store @ Pyramid Arts Centre, Warrington – 5th September 2009
September 6, 2009 2 Comments
Comedy gigs are like buses, you wait…on second thoughts, I won’t complete that thought. Friday night was Tim Minchin and last night it was the turn of the monthly The Comedy Store at Warrington’s glorious Pyramid Arts Centre. I say monthly, but it goes on hiatus over the summer, presumably because of Edinburgh, and this was the first one
back after the break.
Despite going to nearly every other comedy show that they put on, this is the first time that I’ve been to The Comedy Store in over three years. There’s no logical reason for this, so if any psychologists are reading, I’d love to hear your theories on why this might be so.
The MC for the evening was Michael Smiley, who I recognised from somewhere, but I didn’t know where. Having checked on Wikipedia, I realise it’s because he played Tyres in classic sitcom, Spaced. This only endears him to me more. He did an admirable job of warming up the audience, even though he couldn’t get any flow going, with latecomers interrupting him for a full fifteen minutes after the show had started.
The first half of the show had sets from Roger Monkhouse and Gordon Southern, both of whom sound more like bank managers than comedians. I’d heard of Monkhouse before, but only because every time I’ve been on The Comedy Store web-site, he was listed to perform. I don’t think I’d seen anything of Gordon Southern before, although his face was familiar, and you can’t be sure in this day and age. Both were good solid professionals, which sort of erroneously sounds like I’m damning them with faint praise, but it’s actually a compliment. It’s a testament to them that the first half of the show flew by. It obviously didn’t go quick enough for those desperate to get to the bar, many people left while Smiley was still wrapping up before the interval.
The second half of the show got of to a great start with Smiley ripping in to a guy on the front row, who had garnered a lot of stick from all the comedians so far. If you’re going to be awkward, why would you choose to sit on the front row of a comedy gig? He was probably a masochist. The headline act for the evening was Sarah Millican, who won best newcomer at the 2008 Edinburgh festival (and also provides voices to BBC1′s Saturday tea-time, Walk on the Wild Side). She was someone who I’d wanted to see live for a while, so it was a big bonus to see her on the bill, and she didn’t disappoint. She had the audience in the palm of her hand, and her set was hilarious.
And then, that was it. The two hours seemed to disappear, which can only been seen as a good sign, and the audience seemed to really enjoy it. If you’re in the Warrington area, it’s a highly recommended night out, and you should give it a try; it’s a bargain at £13.