Late and Live

Gilded Balloon Main Theatre - Venue 38

Tricky one to review as the lineup changes every night. This show is more of a place to be seen than a place to see a show - you're lucky if you get a seat in the smoky fug, but you can just sit there playing the "Spot the Famous Comedian" game all night if you want to... all night being 1am until 4am - don't go to this if you have work in the morning. Only two stars as most of the memorable laughs were nothing to do with the one and see.

The compere that evening was Ross Noble, and I take my hat off to the man as he kept control of what is after all not the best of audiences (a lot of very squashed, tired, drunk people at 2 in the morning).

First act on was Tripod, another high-energy three-guys-do-funny-songs combo. I could only see two of them from where I was standing, but still enjoyed their ballad to the feature of street entertainment at the Edinburgh Festival - "Standing Still Busker".

Next up was the man known as League Against Tedium - what a mistake. He's been getting great reviews, but whoever put an act consisting of subtle observational comedy on at that time of night straight after an energetic musical act deserves to be taken out and shot. Basically, he "died on his arse" as we call it over here - and eventually gave up, to boos and catcalls. A bit of a shame.

Ross Noble tries to get us all jolly again by somehow getting the keys to someone's flat and sending one of the audience off to get one of their personal items - madness.

The final act was Sean Cullen - another of Corky and the Juice Pigs. He comes on in the style of a "thank you very much I love you all God bless" club singer, and the crowd weren't in the mood for this either. He, however refuses to be daunted and carries on till the bitter end, getting a good reception for doing so.

The woman comes back with a pair of pants (knickers, underwear, boxers for those of you from overseas). These are promptly auctioned (this is all true I swear) and the winner was the comedian Phil Kay, who got the pants (and all the auction money thrown onto the stage) by offering to strip and put them on, which he did. The girls get a treat as he has not made sure he is "tucked in" before raising his arms in final triumphant salute to the audience... well, I'm sure I'll be dining out on this tale for a while yet.... what a night.

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