Shearsmith suggests new series would be with different characters
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Saturday 04 February 2012
The songwriter Ted Dicks wrote "Hole in the Ground" and "Right Said Fred", comic songs whose humour and vitality reflected his own personality and interests. He was a very pleasant and gregarious man with a passion for writing about the working man.
Thursday 20 October 2011
Jason Orange and Catherine Tate had "real sparks" between them from the moment they met.
Friday 02 September 2011
I've spent more of my life playing music than speaking. If I ever really wanted to express an idea, emotion or even a storyline, music has always been my first choice. But having released eight albums, I was keen to find a fresh approach for my ninth so this album started as something quite different – a script.
Sunday 28 August 2011
There was once a comedy sketch from the Monty Python precursor At Last the 1948 Show in which the annoying bibliophile Marty Feldman tried to buy a copy of Rarnaby Budge by Darles Chickens.
Friday 26 August 2011
Jonathan Lynn may be best known as the co-writer of Yes Minister (Margaret Thatcher's favourite sitcom, allegedly) but he has also turned his hand to comic acting, directing and screenwriting. Who better to ask, therefore, if you want to write, perform or direct comedy? Surely he'd know what to do and what not to do? Yet this compact and cheerful book isn't just a user's manual. It's also a charming memoir, full of amusing and insightful anecdotes about the many entertainers Lynn has worked with.
Wednesday 24 August 2011
If anyone has come up with a better beginning and ending to a sketch show on the Fringe this year than Idiots of Ants, I haven't seen it. Model Citizens opens with a tricksy Truman Show-inspired skit and ends with... well, that would be telling. Suffice to say it's a high-energy, feelgood finale to a high-energy, feelgood show.
Friday 19 August 2011
Just when you think you've seen every possible permutation of sketch comedy – troupes of boys in suits or girls in matching frocks, sketches performed at super high-speed, to rock music or in gimp masks – the Fringe throws up another possibility. Toby are Sarah and Lizzie Daykin, real-life sisters who perform surreal sketches while barely keeping a lid on their sibling bickering. Having been spotted by the relentlessly innovative production company The Invisible Dot on the Free Fringe in 2010, they're one of the most refreshing and exciting new acts at the Pleasance this year.
Thursday 11 August 2011
This is the first time I have heard a version of "The Girl from Ipanema" in which the percussionist sports goggles and paint-spattered white overalls and provides a beat by sawing at a plank of wood. But then this is the first time the National has opened its Paintframe, a hangar of a workshop next to the Cottesloe, for a sort of mini-Fringe comprised of two double bills of hour-long plays by young dramatists.
Monday 08 August 2011
At the end of his Fringe show Christ on a Bike last year, Richard Herring usurped the atheism of the majority of his audience when he asked them if they believed in one true love. That concluding flourish in turn has laid the foundation for this discourse, one that has a simple mission; "to destroy love".
Wednesday 27 July 2011
The tragicomic circumstances of Benny Hill's life and death are familiar to anyone who remembers the comedian, and there's a narrative arc to them which doesn't require undue forcing. From wide-eyed young wannabe variety performer to internationally famous television superstar to unmarried and far out-of-fashion pensioner dying alone in his rented Teddington flat, the glory and the sadness of his life speaks for itself.
Sunday 24 July 2011
The Edinburgh Festival is now so crowded that many comedy acts are instead taking to the web in their attempts to break through. But is it any easier – and are the results worthwhile? Matt Chorley asks YouTube's big hitters
Sunday 17 July 2011
Friday 01 July 2011
Following on from its partnership with Steve Coogan, which produced some acclaimed internet shorts featuring Alan Partridge, corporate comedy sponsor Foster's is about to unleash Vic Reeves and Bob Mortimer's Afternoon Delights on the web.
Thursday 23 June 2011
With its American basement club vibe, it was apt that this excellent US duo were chosen to be the inaugural act for Soho Theatre's new downstairs venue. Assembled around tightly packed cabaret tables, tonight's audience faced a curtain backdrop on to which the Pajama Men's name was projected, something almost too fancy for this pretty no-frills (yet high-octane) act whose only props are their expressive voices and bodies.
Thursday 28 April 2011
That may be the end of the PM's lordly ease at the dispatch box. It was a lovely act while it lasted. Week by week we had an exhibition from another era as Cameron showed us the upper-class skill of manners being the art of making other people feel uncomfortable.
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The West has it totally wrong on Lee Kuan Yew
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