Leicester Comedy Festival review: Best in Class with Chris Copestake, Tamsyn Kelly and Lovdev Barpaga at the Cosy Club


Review by Jess Urquhart

“Who’s come here tonight to have a laugh with poor people?” asks host Sian Davies, the creator of Best In Class, a crowd-funded showcase for working class comedians featuring some of the most talented stand-ups I’ve ever seen.

“I’ve been told I have a working class chip on my shoulder,” she says. “To the middle class, chips are what we have instead of couscous.” And with that, we all knew we were in for a great hour of comedy.

Kicking off the show was Chris Copestake from Grimsby, who took us on a journey through his childhood, explaining how he never understood the purpose of your school sports day. His upgrade on the idea? Ditching the egg and spoon from the signature race and replacing them with the stuff you’d carry back from the bar. Those are real skills for life. Chris was personal highlight for me as his Grimbarian anecdotes clicked.

Next up was Tamsyn Kelly, with a powerful take on being a female comedian. She certainly isn’t afraid to share. “Good friends go with you to go pee, but great friends will not get weird when you’re in the cubical sh***ing,” she tells us. A woman who I would love to be friends with, if she’s willing to do that for her gal pals.

Lastly was Lovdev Barpaga, the winner of the 2017 UK Pun Championships. Opening his showcase with his hilarious joke about family, the audience were hooked immediately. With his infectious laugh and subtle digs at his own culture in a tasteful way, the audience could not help but laugh at Lovdev’s incredible work. His interpretation of his African/ Indian mother and the Punjabi-speaking German Shepherd had me belly laughing for ages.

If you get the chance to go and watch one of the Best in Class gigs, do. It’s an hour filled with great comedians, and you’re helping them reach their dream of getting to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. What isn’t there to love?

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