Preview: The Week Ahead Nov 11 - 17

arnold brown

It feels like a festival of Slightly Unsung Comedy Heroes at the Soho Theatre this week. On Tuesday night Arnold Brown, one of the original Comedy Store gang, appears with a show named after his famous catchphrase, & Why Not? This is part of a campaign to fund a film about Brown's life, which I'd certainly like to see. As well as appearing with the likes of Mayall and Edmondson he was one of the first bona fide stand-ups to win a Perrier Award when he scooped the prize in 1987. Just think what fame and fortune would be in store for him if he won it now.

This gig will not actually be a stand-up show but will be more of a chat about his Glaswegian upbringing and Scottish roots. Among those joining Brown will be Miriam Margolyes, who is never lost for words, Bill Paterson, David Schneider and Helen Lederer. As Brown himself might say about his guests, a Scot and some Jews - two racial stereotypes for the price of one.

There is another alternative comedy veteran at the Soho Theatre from Thursday to Saturday. Andy De La Tour was also one of the first wave of new wave comics, but he decided to quit stand-up for a while. Three decades on he is back following the publication of his book charting his comeback in New York, Stand-Up Or Die. Like Alexei Sayle De La Tour was a similarly political, angry performer back in the day. It will be interesting to see how he has mellowed in the new millennium.

And finally, you can catch a younger comedian who has been around the block a bit too on Sunday, when Glenn Wool brings his latest show to Soho. The Canadian globetrotter has a laid back, laconic charm and a cool beatnik sensibility and will be extolling the vices and virtues of being a touring clown-for-hire in This Road Has Tolls

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