Sam Freeman

Storytelling | Theatre | Arts Marketing

Festival’s everywhere!

I have been considering recently what I’d do if I won the lottery, something that I imagine lots of people muse about from time to time.

I quickly passed through the obvious ones (house, car, driving lessons – not in that order), before moving into the deliberately charitable ones (i’d help someone so I seem like a nice individual and the money’s not changed me… come on, we all think it…) before finally settling on the lifestyle choices section. To work or not to work.

To be honest i’m not sure I could deal with not working (although i would improve vastly at FIFA (read more…)) but I also had the idea that I could become a comedy festival junkie for a year on maybe a year out… Like students do without the hassle of going to Australia where I will get sunstroked in 5 seconds.

Yes, going from previews to Edinburgh to Liverpool to Brighton, one gig a day. It’d be amazingly good fun, new places, gig every night and nice meals, I could take my friends, get a VW camper van…

However, back to reality, and a couple of comedy festival’s have caught my attention post-Edinburgh.  The first (for my southern readers) Dave’s Brighton Comedy Festival, and the second (for my northern readers) Liverpool Comedy Festival. Both events look absolutely terrific so I thought I’d pick out a few people to recommend from each!

Dave’s Brighton Comedy Festival

(top 5 to see!)

  1. Ross Noble – The man is a genius, possible the quickest improviser I’ve ever seen, every gig feels like you’ve taken part in a unique event, massively confusing at points but a superstar of comedy.
  2. Russell Kane – A few people I know dislike Kane from his TV appearances, but please, make no mistake, he deserved his Perrier award (or whatever it’s called now), he’s sharp, funny, and is another comedian you warm to instantly!
  3. Dara O’Briain – So let’s get this straight, in the space of 5 years he has gone from an unknown into a national treasure. Let’s be honest without Dara, Mock The Week would be rubbish, a great improviser too who manages to combine wit and warmth. I imagine he could insult you badly and you’d thank him for it afterwards..
  4. Tony Law – He’s crazy, I saw him for the first time in Edinburgh this year, my last show of the fringe, and, it was like a long happy sing-along hallucination, but enjoyable without dizziness or a rampant desire for a Big Mac afterwards.
  5. Terry Alderton – When I ran a comedy night in York we booked Terry not knowing what to expect. His split personality comedy divides opinion a bit, however, it’s thrilling to watch, and Alderton is slick, knows his act inside out and is sure to get you excited!

Liverpool Comedy Festival 

(top 5 to see!)
  1. Alun Cochrane – I have no idea why Alun Cochrane isn’t playing to stadiums.  He should be, or at least in a big theatre. He’s brilliant, funny, sincere and one of the best comedians around. At some point he will become a superstar, I’d see him before that point and say you saw him first…
  2. Markus Birdman – I saw Marcus in Edinburgh in a room with 20 people. The man is a genius, not many people can make a show about death genuinely inspirational while avoiding vomitting moments… He does it…
  3. Seymour Mace – I’ve not seen this new show, but his last show was a dark brooding laugh-fest that ended in a bizarre way and felt very confessional, it was a little disturbing, a little mad and I really enjoyed it… I was hopefully meant to..
  4. Josie Long – I’ve a confession to make. I’ve never seen Josie Long live. Everyone I know raves about her. And everyone can’t be wrong.
  5. Simon Munnery – Probably the best joke writer in the country, and a bit of a comedy legend. Enough said really…