Leicester Comedy Festival: Kathryn Mather, Andrew Ryan and Scott Bennett at Peter Pizzeria


Review by Kinga Ludwin

An hour zipped by at ‘First Night Funnies’ which offered a trio of stand-ups at Leicester’s Peter Pizzeria.

The winner of the South East New Comedian of the Year 2018, Kathryn Mather doesn’t hold back her punches.

Honesty is a word that neatly encapsulates her style. She makes no attempt to hide her hatred for people who come to the escape room where she works. She doesn’t like kids, she criticises her vegetarian partner and claims the only reason she works as a comedian is an obligation to pay bills.

In a moving, candid and funny set, she tells of her experience with a menstrual cup and of a mum who called her a slag then brings out a trashy magazine with a huge “he beat my baby with a dumbbell” headline on the front page and uses it to prove why we are so brainwashed.

Britain may be out of Europe but Brexit jokes are still in vogue. “This is the first time I am doing a festival outside of the EU,” says Andrew Ryan. It’s a bit of a dad joke, but we can forgive him as the winner of Leicester Comedy Festival’s Best New Show 2018.

Ryan roasts Great Britain from the bottom to the top, naming the UK as the most arrogant country in the world. Donald Trump takes some flak too, but an undeniably  funny set loses me when his focus shifts to cancer.  Maybe that’s just me.

Last but not least is Scott Bennett, a father of two who’s very much the thinking comedy fan’s stand-up. He’s at his best when he homes in on the horrors of keeping his second daughter in a room little bigger than a box. My favourite part, though, is his portrayal of the British at the airport, swigging pints at four in the morning. Scott’s a star.


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