We had a good choice of seats as we'd not left our arrival to last minute. As with many comedy clubs, the seating is not reserved and if the night is extremely busy you may end up standing at the bar for the whole gig if you’re the last to arrive – as we did the first time we went to a Newcastle comedy club back in the 90s (Anyone remember the Comedy Café at the Tyne Theatre?) No such worries tonight as there were enough seats for everyone. We’ve only seen “full and standing” a couple of times here over the years.
|Photo: Stephen Oliver|
Steffen Peddie’ reputation continues to grow. He is the Radio Newcastle DJ, who is also a member of the Geordie Rat Pack. As an established comic he did a grand job warming up a challenging crowd. Checking what the Wednesday crowd were willing to accept as humour, he tested the boundaries. Probing the crowds funny bone with professional aplomb. He is a man who generates material from the crowd though he isn't deliberately nasty. His tenacity to seek the comedy from an eclectic crowd ensured he left the crowd ready for each act.
Thoroughly warmed up, the first act Lauren Pattison charmed the Stand crowd with some highlights of her celebrated EdFringe Lady Muck set about her travels to London. The former Kenton School pupil isn't ashamed of her roots and she had the Newcastle audience listening to her every word. Unlike her recent trip to the Alphabetti she didn’t have a room half full of friends and half full of her ex-teachers so she was more relaxed. The full Lady Muck show returns for one final
Si Beckwith started the second act with a set about people's attitudes. This included what it is like being insulted as an adult? At times he was slightly surreal. A few quickly worked routines had the audience laughing before Game of Thrones' Ben Crompton arrived. The manic routine blew off any Christmas cobwebs. Rattling through regional stereotypes with a ferocious delivery was like Robin Williams in his prime. The BBC 3 Pramface star injected some energy into the room.
Headliner Carl Hutchinson quickly got the crowd onside when discussing all inclusive holidays from both the tour operators attitude to the need to make the most of it. Gauging by the reaction, most of the crowd have experienced a similar holiday. Likewise they understood how arguments between couples can become something of an Olympic sport and a simple request can turn into a massive memory game. The connection with the audience extended to his well worked ordering a kebab whilst very drunk sketch.