An update

Chris here. It’s been a sinfully long time since either of us wrote a new blogpost. Since early April I’ve been cast in a professional London comedy sketch show, rehearsed it and completed 4 out of 5 performances!

It was a fun experience, a wonderfully familiar one in that at last I’d returned to performing but also new in the sense that I’d never previously been in an out-and-out comedy show before. The idea that the four playlets I was in would only be deemed to have succeeded if the audience laughed at them was a daunting one but it’s good to have a challenge! And the humour was, shall we say, a matter of taste: purely for adults, and with more than a hint of the dark and the surreal. I have two favourite characters that I got to play. The first was a lunatic who corners some unfortunate City trader type on a park bench and proceeds to list his favourite sweets almost ad infinitum before moving on to children’s TV shows and then, logically, serial killers. The climax comes as my victim discovers we share a love of declaiming the prime ministers of Great Britain. Trust me, it’s funny. The particular challenge with this sketch was to find the variations in what was a 10 minute monologue of lists. Enormous fun but hell to learn the lines.

My other favourite character was a jaded businessman who has regrettable amorous feelings for a teddy bear that happens to be the cruel managing director of the company, embezzling from the profits to pay for jollies to EuroDisney. I think the audience were suitably shocked when I actually acted upon my lustful feelings on stage. Like I said, this was not quite like any other show I had done before! But I’m glad to have had the experience and it’s been wonderful performing on stage again. We have one more show, on Tuesday 12th July at 7.30pm at the Hob comedy club in Forest Hill, as part of the Sydenham Arts Festival.

The name of the show is ‘Ocelot Gymkhana: The Final’ and the director is Jonathan Kaufman of Spontaneous Productions ( ). Jonathan co-wrote the sketches with his brother Julian, and is a very warm and generous director. The last three performances (we only did Sunday evening shows) were at the Canal Cafe Theatre in Little Venice, a cosy and chic little venue. The best part of the whole thing was the fact that we rehearsed it all in the back room of a bookshop! There’s a first time for everything!


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