Preview: The Week Ahead Oct 28 - Nov 4

paul chowdhry

There has been much wailing and gnashing of teeth recently about the decline of comedy clubs. In fact I've written about it myself. But two clubs open in London this week, bucking the trend, albeit with the aid of some top quality TV talent. 

The first new comedy night is a chance for big names to try out new material for C4's Stand Up for the Week and as I've said elsewhere, stand-up on television may actually be damaging stand-up in clubs. But on the other hand I enjoy seeing stand-up in clubs so this deserves a mention. Soho's German restaurant Herman Ze German starts its eight-week Monday night season this evening with Seann Walsh, Josh Widdicombe, Simon Evans and Paul Chowdhry among those road-testing their gags. Just for complete transparency I've been told I can have a sausage if I come to the club, but I'd be writing writing this preview even if I was not being coaxed with Teutonic meat. 

This Wednesday another new monthly club opens at the Proud Archivist in East London which will be specialising in giving acts a chance to do the kind of longer sets they might do at the Soho Theatre or in Edinburgh. Jarred Christmas, one of the best comperes in the business, will be the regular host and will start proceedings before another act does 40 minutes and a headliner does an even bigger set. The opening acts are Phil Nichol and a headliner who everyone will know from the telly but who cannot be named.

Earlier this year the Greenwich Comedy Festival had plans to move to Brick Lane. Unfortunately the event was cancelled at the last minute so now the Greenwich Festival returns to the place it was surely destined to be in – Greenwich – for two nights this weekend. The line-up includes Mark Watson, Alexei Sayle and there is a chance to see Josie Long live and also on film – her two short films are being screened at the local cinema.

Also this week take your pick from the Jasons. Jason Manford brings his First World Problems tour to Hammersmith Apollo on Oct 30 & 31, while  Jason Byrne is at the Bloomsbury Theatre on Friday and Saturday. If you are going to the second Jason please don't, under any circumstances, mention Father Figure.

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