Tag Archives: Ivan Brackenbury

Punchline Comedy Gala with Seann Walsh, Ian D Montford, Des Clarke and Ivan Brackenbury

16 Mar

Ladies and gentlemen, Punchline is in town! And for the first time ever, we were in two towns. Friday 25th October saw the comedy gala rip up Perth Concert Hall, and on Saturday 26th October we took over Edinburgh’s Picturehouse. Helping us to put on two awesome shows were comedians Des Clarke, Ian D Montford, Seann Walsh and Ivan Brackenbury. Here are the highlights from October’s Punchline Comedy Gala.

Des Clarke opens the show

Des Clarke opens the show

Des Clarke was the perfect host; his anecdotes are not only majestically funny, but also told with the spin of a professional story-teller. As a ‘local’ Scotsman (can a Glaswegian really call himself a local in Edinburgh?) his familiar references and home-grown jokes were a storming introduction to the Punchline galas. In fact, Des is so good at weaving a story together, that I could listen to him, always laughing, tell that one about the Olympic torch, over and over and over…

The opening act for Des to introduce, firstly to the Perth Punchline Gala and secondly to Edinburgh, was spirit medium Ian D Montford. Dressed all in white, long blonde hair and flip flops, you could see both audiences were stunned as they attempted to figure out what this man might bring to the lineup. What he did bring, was funny, cheeky and witty jokes, wrapped up in a genuine psychic ability and an edge-of-your-seat performance.

Ian D. Montford

Ian D. Montford

Up next was Punchline favourite Seann Walsh. Seann’s Edinburgh festival show ‘The Lie-In King’ saw him nominated for the Edinburgh Comedy Award this year, and his numerous TV appearances mark his success even more notably. Seann brought elements of his Festival show, alongside some classic observational material to create a highly energetic and hilarious performance like only our Seann Walsh can.

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Seann Walsh

Headlining the shows was hospital radio DJ Ivan Brackenbury, so good he got a standing ovation at the end of his set. If you haven’t seen Ivan before, the gist of his jokes is that he makes a big shout out to one of the hospital’s patients, then teams it up with a completely inappropriate song. The outcome is side-splittingly good, conjuring laughter from the darkest corner of comedy and pushing Ivan’s sense of imagination to the forefront. Ivan broadcasted a very special show live from Punchline, straight back to the hospital, engraving an epic ending in to the weekend.

Ivan Brackenbury

Ivan Brackenbury

The beauty of Punchline comes from the immaculate details applied to every aspect of the show by our producer Rosalind Romer. From the class lineup, right down to the perfect venues, Punchline is by far, the best night of comedy in town. But don’t just take it from me, stay tuned and come along to the next show @punchlineuk facebook.com/punchlineuk

Punchline’s Top 10 Comedy Shows

4 Aug

felicity ward

It’s difficult to narrow down our top picks for this year’s Fringe, but here is Punchline’s Starter for 10 (in no particular order):

Nick Helm is the only person in the comedy world who can get away calling himself a “One Man Mega Myth”. Those who came to October’s Punchline won’t need convincing. You will be part of the show but you probably won’t mind.

Boy with Tape on His Face is a delightful hour that’s original, funny and touching. It’s also a good one if you have any visitors who don’t speak English as a first language.

Felicity Ward One of Punchline’s Top 3 last year, Australian comic Felicity Ward is laugh out loud funny. She covers various subjects and you kind of feel like you’re chatting to her in the pub, then find yourself crying with laughter.

Joe Lycett is delightful and very funny, with a sting in his tail. He’s going to be a comedy superstar so get in now.

Josh Widdicombe is fast becoming a household name, as seen on Last Leg and Mock The Week.

Andrew Lawrence is one of the best comedians full stop. Go and see him.

Local lad Iain Stirling is a Bafta-nominated presenter and Chortle-nominated comedian, returning home to bring you a new hour of standup.

Ivan Brackenbury is the hapless hospital radio DJ who plays pumpin’ but inappropriate songs. Be advised to pay in advance as he has queues around the block already.

Susan Calman is here until 12 August, doing a work-in-progress show. Clever comedy and personal stories from an inspiring performer.

Seann Walsh is another Punchline favourite – will this be his big year?

Other recommendations: David Trent, Aisling Bea, Carl Donnelly, Pat Cahill, James Acaster, Claudia O’Doherty & Romesh Ranganathan

We’re hearing good things about John Kearns – let us know what you think!

Matt Richardson is not doing a Fringe show but he is appearing on a couple of late night shows and he’s well worth a look if you can find him.

Comedy Reserve has four bright young things including Punchline’s own John Hastings, and Comedy Zone has the excellent Lucy Beaumont and Carl Hutchinson (who also has his own solo show).

Punchline’s Free Fringe Recommendations!

24 Jul

Ivan Brackenbury

Words by Susan Ford

As a comedian or performer, the beauty of the Fringe Festival lies in its ‘anyone can take part’ policy.  The theory is, that as long as you have a venue willing to house your show, you can perform at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.  This is the spirit very much at the heart of the Free Fringe, a vital part of the Fringe Festival that showcases comedians who perhaps wouldn’t have the opportunity were the festival still in the hands of the elitist.

Anyone will tell you to take a chance on the Free Fringe, and admittedly there is something wholly romantic about venturing through Edinburgh and unearthing the best new comedians.  However, let’s face it, the bohemian idea of allowing anyone to perform does not give much way for quality control.  I guess, what I’m saying is yes, take a plunge in to the unknown and discover your favourite new comedian, but take on our recommendations before you go exploring!

It’s also worthwhile to mention that the Free Fringe is not “free”! The performers and comedians have spent their own money on production, travel and accommodation already and rely on contributions from the audience to get by.  If you have enjoyed the show, be expected to show your gratitude with a donation, and please be respectful of this.

Now I’ve got my admin duties out the way, on with the recommendations…

Laughing Horse present a 60 minute joint show from one to watch Adam Hess and Chortle Student Comedy Award finalist David Elms. As part of super-sketch group Jigsaw, Nat Luurtsema performed regularly on BB3’s Live At the Electric: this year she presents her first solo show in three years also through Laughing Horse. Sanderson Jones and Pippa Evans’ (The Now Show, Radio 4) show has been described as “an interactive, digital, improv, atheist church service spectacular”, join them for their hour long joint set and see them live up to the hype.

Eric Lampaert

Also in association with Laughing Horse are Glenn Moore and Eric Lampaert.  Glenn Moore was So You Think You’re Funny 2012 finalist and Chortle Student Comedian 2011 runner-up, this year he invites friends to join him for his hour long show ‘Employees of the Month’. Eric Lampaert was a backing singer in Nick Helm’s band on Comedy Blap “I Fancy the Pants off of You”. Absurdist and energetic, Lampaert’s show is not to be missed.

PBH Free Fringe is bringing some great names to the Free Fringe festival. Luke Toulson is another comedian seen on Russell Howard’s Good News, and was nominated for a Perrier Comedy Award; his show is on in the beautiful Cabaret Voltaire throughout the festival. John-Luke Roberts is a comedian, writer and actor, and is bringing his new stand up show to PBH’s Free Fring this year.

Mark Stephenson has a plethora of comedy awards under his belt – Time Out’s One to Watch 2013, Chortle Best Newcomer nominee, Laughing Horse New Act of the Year, and Leicester Square New Act of the Year. His show ‘Half Man Half Amazing’ will prove how worthy he is of his awards collection. 2013 marks Jessica Fostekew‘s third solo show at the Fringe. In the last year Jess has performed on Stephen K Amos’ new BBC Radio 4 show , she’s appeared on BBC Breakfast (BBC1) four times and she has supported Micky Flanagan and Terry Alderton on tour accross the UK: don’t miss her Free Fringe show this year. Edinburgh Amuseum: Three’s A Crowd squeezes three up and coming comedians, all from Edinburgh, in to one show: Katia Kvinge, Eddie O’Dwyer and Rory Telfer perform.

Nathaniel Metcalfe  has been doing stand up since May 2007, and went through to the semi-finals of the So You Think You’re Funny? competition after only five gigs: his free show this year allows him to indulge in his minor obsessions. QI Elf and creator of BBC2s ‘The Museum of Curiosity’ Dan Schreiber, is quite possibly the coolest person in the world.  Or so he used to think: watch him explore many reasons why he perhaps isn’t, and I swear you will fall in love.

David Burke

The Beehive’s Scottish Comedy Festival is a great way to experience the Free Fringe.  Our recommendations for the Beehive are Ray Mearns ‘Waking Up Next To Myself’, Bob Graham ‘Animal Person’ and Pearse James and Martin Bearne ‘Comedy Has the Right to Children’.  After sell-out nights at last year’s festival, Robin Grainger and Gregor Wappler are back with ‘Applause 2: Breaking Gags’ and is a must see this year, with each show featuring a special guest host. For the Beehive’s full line up, visit www.scottishcomedyfestival.com.

David Burke has a real knack for storytelling, he can make any story hilarious and charming all at the same time, hence the name of his new show ‘Exciting Adventures of an Uninteresting Man’. For an absolute guarantee of a giggle, catch Punchline favourite Ivan Brackenbury, radio DJ and very funny character. See him at the Fringe, and then join us in October to see Ivan play at Punchline in both Edinburgh and Perth.

London is Funny Presents… is the alternative variety comedy show.  With the likes of previous performers Cardinal Burns and James Acaster, this show is a very valuable showcase of new talent. Marcel Lucont’s Cabaret Fantastique is another great free variety show that invites guests to perform in an hour of fun.

We hope you have found our guide useful, and that you make the most of the Free Fringe when it visits us in August.  If you have any recommendations that you’d like to share with us, please do tweet us @punchlineuk.

Punchline 2013 Line Up Revealed: a look at Punchline’s past

5 Jun

Seann WalshBy Susan Ford

As the festival announcements come in thick and fast, Punchline are getting in on the action to reveal some very exciting news: October’s line-up has now been revealed. Before I jump straight in to that, let’s take a look back at the hilarious comedians and acts that have made the Punchline name so strong. Don’t worry though comedy lovers, I’ll wrap it up at the end with our big announcement…

Punchline launched in March 2012, with its first show housed in the Usher Hall. The Usher Hall sums up everything Punchline represents – it’s grand, it’s beautiful and it’s absolutely massive! Punchline promoter Rosalind Romer twisted the preconceptions of comedy and big venues, by booking acts that may not be as big as Michael McIntyre, but certainly are on the cusp of it. Playing the first show were Seann Walsh, Andrew Lawrence, Idiots of Ants, Mark Olver and the extremely surprising mystery guest Frankie Boyle: don’t just take my word for how much fun it was, here’s what the press said:

‘A brand new comedy night of the rather ace variety… a very welcome addition to the Edinburgh comedy scene’ THE SKINNY
‘A chance to get a feel for the furore of the Fringe in the middle of March’ THE STUDENT
‘An impressive launch roster’ SUNDAY TIMES
‘Tip-top triple bill’ THE LIST
‘A festival in a day’ CASTLE FM

The second Punchline show in October 2012 took three of the biggest shows from the Edinburgh Festival and squeezed them in to one night. Performing were Josh Widdicombe, Roisin Conaty and Nick Helm, with host Greg Burns. Roisin Conaty has made a name for herself on BBC3s ‘Impractical Jokers’, Josh Widdicombe has been on pretty much every TV show this year, including ‘The Last Leg’ alongside Adam Hills and Alex Brooker, and Nick Helm is topped to be one of the hottest acts this festival. Catch Nick Helm and Josh Widdicombe proving how good Punchline’s taste in comedy is at this year’s Edinburgh Festival.

Promo - Josh Josh Widdicombe, October 2012 Punchline performer

The most recent show in March there showed off Punchline’s pick of the Fringe 2012, with John Hastings, David Trent, Pappy’s and Charlie Baker all performing. Charlie Baker had the audience in stitches with his Devonshire charm, while Pappy’s played downright silly with hilarious and clever sketches that were completely unpredictable.

And now for our big announcement…

Whilst Punchline will not be returning to the Usher Hall on October 26th, they will be bringing back a very special comedian from the first ever show: Seann Walsh. Since his first appearance at Punchline, Seann Walsh has performed on numerous panel shows, was a team captain on Argumental, and recently filmed his own series ‘Seann Walsh World’. He will be showcasing his new show ‘The Lie-In King’ at this year’s festival and is a very welcome return to the Punchline line-up.

Alongside Seann Walsh, in the new venue The Picture House in Edinburgh, will be Ian D Montfort, Ivan Brackenbury & Des Clarke. The new line-up has incorporated Punchline’s predictions for who will be successful during the Fringe, alongside Rosalind’s unique and inside knowledge from within the comedy circuit. Don’t miss this one; tickets are available now from http://mamacolive.com/thepicturehouse/listings/upcoming-events/8328/punchline-comedy-gala

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