Just The Tonic Uses Culture Fund to Continue Online Shows

Just The Tonic Uses Culture Fund to Continue Online Shows

Live stream and on-demand broadcasting will continue for Just The Tonic Comedy Club’s viewers this year - after it secured funding via the Government’s #HereForCulture movement.

The financial support was awarded to Just The Tonic by Arts Council England on behalf of the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport. It is part of the government’s £1.57bn package for UK culture and heritage.

It came as a tremendous boost for Just The Tonic founder and owner Darrell Martin, who has championed comedy’s rise to the digital screen via his critically acclaimed Working From Home shows which are delivered from his bedroom.

Using TicketCo Media Services’ integrated live stream and ticketing platform Just The Tonic has grown fresh audiences despite its nine UK venues being forced to close in the last year.

#HereForCulture was formed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic which brought unprecedented challenges to venues, performers and artists across the UK. The support fund is designed to help cultural organisations survive and reopen when possible. To date, more than £1 billion of Culture Recovery funding has been allocated in the form of grants and repayable finance.

Darrell said: “We are extremely proud to have been recognised for our contribution to England’s cultural offering.

“Our Arts Council England Cultural Renewal Grant will allow us to bring our audiences the very best in comedy for the remainder of 2021 both in a physical capacity and via digital events.

“#HereForCulture supported us during 2020 and through the COVID-19 pandemic. It helped us develop fantastic live stream shows and form the new normal of entertainment.

“The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport have supported so many businesses that contribute to the arts sector, bringing laughter, creativity and entertainment to a world which would be a lost land without it!”

Founded in 1994, Just The Tonic is widely described as the UK’s best comedy club and has worked with star names including Ricky Gervais, Michael McIntyre, Peter Kay, Bill Bailey and Ross Noble. 

Working From Home has grown in popularity since it made its small screen debut last spring with comics including Johnny Vegas, Ed Byrne, Hal Cruttenden and Romesh Ranganathan appearing. The screengrab on this page features an anarchic moment featuring Darrell Martin and Matt Forde as Boris Johnson.

“The pandemic has changed people’s habits,” added Darrell. “What people would’ve done in 15 or 20 years is happening now.

“We’ve developed an online audience via TicketCo Media Service and I’m confident we can retain their digital interest even when COVID-19 restrictions end, especially during the winter.

“This latest round of Government funding will protect Just The Tonic’s physical and digital comedy shows until the conclusion of our roadmap to exit the pandemic.”

David Kenny, Head of Global Partnerships at TicketCo Media Services, said: “The Government has provided unprecedented funds to support cultural organisations through the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Just The Tonic has pioneered online comedy and set a new standard for events delivery digitally. Recognition of its work via financial support from Government is testament to the hard work of Darrell and his team and we’re proud to have played a key role in the delivery of the events. 

“We look forward to working with Just The Tonic to support the return of physical events and the continuation of comedy online.”

Originally launched in Nottingham Just the Tonic has hosted countless up and coming comics as well as the most established TV names. It is now one of the most respected live comedy brands in the UK with venues in Leicester, Birmingham, Nottingham, Reading and Watford.

Tickets for its next Working From Home show on Saturday, April 17, can be purchased here. The show starts at 9pm with last entry available until 9.30pm.

TicketCo Media Services is a cloud-based event payment company, with offices in Norway, the UK, and Sweden. The payment platform is integrated with its pay-per-view live streaming and video-on-demand service.

TicketCo recently spoke to digital expert Simon Baker to uncover how venues can embrace digital and hybrid events to survive. The article can be read in full here. 



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