Comedy - Barnstormers

I went to the last Barnstormers night a month ago expecting to laugh, which I did a bit at the first act (who was nervous), and a lot at the second act (who was funny). There were only fifteen in the audience. The third act, a malicious character with studied facial hair, a showy Dickensian check jacket and a very dark sense of humour, decided to use me as the butt of his jokes when things got quiet, which they often did. At first his malicious jibes were met by a frozen smile, as I prayed for his attention to wander. As they continued, I stopped pretending and adopted a scowl. He was like a school bully who’d found a victim. I didn’t have the nerve to heckle back. When his set finished I clapped for good form. I felt more like taking him down a dark twitten and giving him a good kicking. And I’m not a violent man. Afterwards I kept working out what I should have said back. This wasn’t audience participation. It was audience humiliation.

Tonight I am assured that there will be more people at the gig - two 10-people tables were booked by Monday, and other tickets had been sold. One act, Pierre Hollins, is from Lewes. He plays ‘Englishman’s Blues’ and a musical interpretation of cunnilingus on a guitar and an electric squash racket. There are two other acts tonight, Eddie Izzard’s associate John Gordillo and another unnamed comedian. I shall sit at the back, in the dark, trying not to be noticed. AL

Stand-up and be counted: but donít go too near the front
Pelham House
When? 8pm
How Much? £9 on door. £7.50 in advance
Tickets from:
Garden Room Café, Station St,
or (t) 01323 490001
‘Cabaret-style’ tables for up to
10 people are bookable for £60.