While I am already an avid ComedySoc fan, the Comedy Festival showed true comedic craft. Although audience turnout was considerably lower for this night of comedy, maybe due to the fact that it was more remote than their normal V/045 room, the audience gave an enthusiastic response to each comedian. Those who did attend were highly energised by Lewis Dunn’s hilarious anecdotes on day-to-day life and relationships.
The audience was presented with an array of enthralling comedy; ranging from witty social commentary on aging population to darker sarcasm. The highlights came from those first and last to the stage. Stephen Harper broke the ice, recently seen as the main part in the Penderson Brothers’ Office Supplies sketch show, he used his quirky charm to win over the audience with his gadget based jokes – while still relating his comedy back to a favourite topic of the comedians, relationships. Later Mungo Tatton-Brown took to the stage and ended the show on an absolute high through his energetic stage presence and comedic timing. He really engaged the audience. All in all the standups were pretty darn good, and each having their own niche meant that the audience remained invested and eager for the next throughout.
After a short interval to let the standup comedians take a well deserved break at the bar, the audience was treated to an outstanding performance by improv group, The Shambles. This dynamic set, to the audience’s delight, had a considerably longer slot than their typical warm up act. They proceeded to do their usual games including ‘four sided square’ (don’t ask), though did end on a game I had not seen before: a pub song/ chant which concluded the show well, with the audience singing along. Based on the buzz The Shambles created amongst the audience, I was left questioning if they somewhat overshadowed ComedySoc’s standup efforts. This aside, the organisation of the evening was pretty smooth: no act was rushed off the stage and Lewis linked each of them together with reactionary jokes.This was a night that was not to be missed, so if you did not attend this one, definitely add the next one to your diary immediately!