Thursday, October 29, 2009

Karaoke Circus part III

Part III for me in any case, there have in fact been rather more than that - including an Edinburgh edition (alas not when I was there) during which Simon Amstell sang Enrique Iglesias's Hero. Cannot BELIEVE I missed that.

Anyway. I am a full seven days late in posting this, but it's never too late to say a few words about Karaoke Circus - and it will be just a very few words, don't worry, I realise there is only so much gushing one readership can take. But oh, readership, it is such a lovely, life-enhancing thing. This KC saw the night return to Downstairs at the Albany, a small room under a Great Portland Street pub that manages to be swelteringly hot even on a chilly late October evening. The 100 Club, while pleasingly legendary surroundings, may be a little big, but the Albany, it has to be said, is probably a little small.

But no matter, the heat only serves to augment the 'all in it together' spirit that KC manages to evoke. Not that it needs much augmenting. The line-up that had been announced in advance, including Richard Herring, Robin Ince, Andrew Collins, Josie Long and 'something special' from the previously brilliant Chris Addison, was exciting enough in itself, but KC head honcho Martin White had a few secret gems up his sleeve.

Just imagine my face, if you will, when Jessica Hynes walked into the room. Jessica. Hynes. The comedy queen that co-created one of the greatest sitcoms - possibly TV shows generally - of all time. It takes something genuinely surprising for ones jaw to actually drop - but I was surprised, and it certainly dropped. Not that the wonderousness of the situation ended there; turns out she is also a great singer with a beautifully bluesy voice. AND she gave congratulatory slaps on the back to the punters who braved the stage. Put her down as one of those rare 'great at everything but still lovable' types.

This was basically enough for me, of course, but the whole night was brilliant, and as always, the punters were as entertaining as the comedians, and the audience generous and supportive. Overseen by the house band (Martin, keyboard; Danielle Ward, bass; David Reed, drums; Foz, guitar) Long was the first comic up with Nothing Compares 4U, Collins went all dark and tortured with Nirvana's Lithium, there was a bit of Bugsy Malone, Duran Duran, Buzzcocks, Blur and Queen. And to top it all off, Chris Addison channelled Jarv for a barnstorming, roof-raising Common People.

Hmm. That probably doesn't count as a very few words. If you felt you need to read even more, however, there are performers and audience-members alike who have been rather more timely with their blogging. Collins did it first and best as always, plus there's a few words from Mr White himself, and from the lovely Simone, Will Howells can feel better about how long it took him to blog it, and there are beautiful photos from Linzy and Paul Bailey. Which just about covers it, I'd say.


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NorthWestLondonGirlInTheCountry said...

I will be sure to be there next time round - it sounds like a riot.

Patricia said...

Me too for sure. I agree with NW London Girl.
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