Tonight I was at the Lyric Rooms in Ashby for the Funhouse Comedy show. This was a Christmas triple headliner special and by heck did we all have a champion night. The room was pretty much full and there were a couple of sizeable groups present, such as Amber’s lot, who were celebrating her 18th birthday, but she wasn’t drinking, as she was her family’s designated driver for the night. Mike had a lot of fun with this younger than usual audience, particularly with Hayden and the youngster with a huge beard. I was especially pleased to see Brent there, as I didn’t think I’d see him before Christmas and it was a very unexpected pleasure to see Alex Martini arrive with Phil Nichol.

Ignacio Lopez

Lopez opened with a cracking series of jokes about locations and this really got the audience invested in what he was saying, as it was all relevant to the venue. He followed this up with a cheerful and happy performance that had a very welcome festive theme to it. Bunny was a highlight to this. However, that was topped by his Nirvana cover, which involved a series of excellent callbacks to his earlier material. This was very funny and also, admirably clever. The outsider song that he finished on, provided a great closing routine.

Sean Heydon

This was an amazing performance. Heydon is extremely engaging and as he’d been listening to Mike’s compering, he got everyone’s name right, which is a small detail that can really add to a performance. Heydon performed a number of super magic tricks, which were all spectacular and his asides really brought out the funny with them. His main volunteer, Bella, totally got involved in what she was doing and Heydon used this very adeptly and it was the same with his second volunteer. The routine with the phone was a gripping showstopper. How Heydon didn’t receive a standing ovation, I’ll never know, as this was top notch.

Phil Nichol

I’d not seen Nichol for quite a while, so this was a real treat and it was also something of a privilege to see someone work so very hard to give the audience a great time. Nichol is a real showman and he worked this room like I’ve never seen. He had the audience eating out of the palm of his hand, clapping, singing and chanting the name of Kes, his duet partner. This was a performance with a capital P and there was something for everyone here, with gags, visual jokes, songs and a lot of audience work. Nichol closed the night not only on a high, but also with a large feel good factor, too. This was a belter of a gig.


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