Shuttleworth the singer - whose hits include the ineffable, self-explanatory 'Mini-break in Giggleswick', 'Pillock of the Community', 'One Foot in the Gravy,' and 'Mary Had a Little Lamb', about the time he and his wife Mary went to a carvery restaurant - makes you realise why Yamaha is more celebrated for its motorbikes than its electric organs. His spoof singing has (dis)graced Jonathan Ross's Saturday Zoo, Radio 4's The Shuttleworths, and can be seen from tonight until Saturday in What's A Shuttleworth? at the Bloomsbury Theatre.
When I called Mr Fellows's office last week, he kindly put me through to Mr Shuttleworth, who revealed many trade secrets. In the show, he is going to give 'hints and tips for aspiring vocalists - you know, dress sense, that sort of thing. I'll also be telling 'em 'don't take drugs. You can achieve a heightened state of awareness with a four-pack of Hofmeister.' Another one of my essentials is 'have a jacket potato for yer tea before you go on stage'.'
The performer, a master of many media, likes the radio as much as the stage. 'You can be sedentary. You don't have to polish your glasses or get dressed up. You can just be smart but casual.'
But Shuttleworth is nothing if not considerate to his legions of fans and finds his 11.30pm slot on Radio 4 'very anti-social, it's just for night-workers and insomniacs. I'd rather be on Radio Sheffield or hospital radio. I don't know anyone who listens to Radio 4. Those who do think it's comedy, but they're wrong. It's just eavesdropping on me life.'
'What's A Shuttleworth?' is at the Bloomsbury Theatre, WC1 (071-387 9629) at 8pm tonight, tomorrow and Saturday. Tickets are pounds 8/pounds 6
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