Having been the chosen audience victim of comedian’s many times (thanks Dad) I really don’t know what compelled me to think dead centre, fourth row back, was a smart move. It’s only when we arrived, that I realised my great error, sitting in-line with the mic stand and cursed past me. Luckily (and perhaps it was due to the face I worked on – a look of abject terror) I wasn’t picked on once. But a lot of the people around me were (to be expected when you’re that close) and some coped better than others.
MC Danny McLoughlin was a real treat – and completely at home on stage. And so he should be as a Chester local. His top-notch knowledge kept us thoroughly entertained, alongside the suggestion we should have an after-party at Rosies. I’m chuffed to see he’ll be compering the next one. A highlight for me was him instigating a game of Family Fortunes centred around what tapas someone had chosen. You’ll just have to trust me that it was truly hilarious.
The reason I’d eagerly grabbed tickets to this though, is to be reunited with (from a safe distance) the comic love of my life – James Acaster. I had the pleasure of seeing him a lot in London (not as a stalker) and he quickly became my favourite funny man. No one else can reduce me so swiftly to hysterics and happy tears. And he didn’t disappoint on the night – delivering his typically intense perspective on everything from heaped tea spoons of hot chocolate to the cheeky moon.
Barbara Nice was charming and I very much enjoyed her insistence that we get on our feet and perform a dance routine (okay, not initially but cynical me was won over). She promised we’d feel better for it, and truly, we did. I always inwardly sigh at group participation, but Chester was completely with her – it was unapologetic fun and somehow worked its magic on me. I even giggled.
Matt Richardson bounded about the stage, energised and seemingly truly delighted to perform for the Chester crowd. We happily ate up his crass jokes, even if he did spend a lot of time insinuating that we were ridiculously posh. The funny man got away with it. The majority of Lou Conran’s lines landed to chuckles and the odd intake of breath. Her delivery was animated and well-rehearsed, delivered with an infectious grin. Danny kept the whole night flowing and cackling, and really tied it together for me – not an easy job when you’re jumping in-between the main acts, trying to maintain rapport – but he smashed it.
I highly recommend you liven up your weekend with an ‘Our Rita’s‘ comic outing. Tickets to the next event (Saturday 31st March) are a very reasonable £12.50, and would go beautifully with a meal out at one of Chester’s wonderful independent restaurants. Give us a shout if you want a recommendation. We happen to really like eating and laughing (weird that).