Leicester Comedy Festival review: Silver Stand Up Final with Mrs Barbara Nice at Peter Pizzeria

Barbara Nice - Lead image

Review by Ella Lloyd

This show was pigging brilliant, as Barbara Nice would say.

Nice was the perfect host for the Leicester Comedy Festival’s, Silver Stand Up final – bubbly, flamboyant and crazy.

Watching her bust some dance moves to 60s throwback music, was like watching your gran at a party after one too many Pear Drops.

She was unpredictable like the change of wind. Where would she end up next?

Climbing on top of the chairs, that’s where. Nice made sure that everybody in the audience got involved with her cheesy sing-along.

Read more: See our Leicester Comedy Festival reviews here.

The 90-minute show was a nonstop whirlwind as the eight acts competed against one another in five-minute slots.

First up was Glen Stone. He played with the typical ‘let me read your mind’ theme. Guaranteed to make you crease, even when you already know that he has absolutely no clue what card ‘Judy in the audience’ is thinking of.

Next, Jenny Bolt, who spoke candidly of her overgrown private parts. Savage – and the easily embarrassed in the crowd must have been sinking low into their chairs.

Showcasing his slow, serious and stern style, Robin Banks joked about the silver linings in each and every situation. Good or bad there was always a cracking pun involved.

Pleasing the room with her original themes, Karen Blott caught the crowd’s attention with her dry sense of humour. Her accent came across as upper-class, but her content was common as muck.

Wearing his red, sparkly shirt, Jimbo entered the stage looking like he was about to perform on Dancing On Ice. It was definitely eye-catching. He joked about the consequences of taking drugs as part of his act. Judging by his performance, it’s not entirely clear whether it was just a joke.

Margaret Pinder focused on politics. Of course, there is always one. Four-time Silver Stand Up finalist, Kevin Hudson was fantastic. The audience were very appreciative of his old-school jokes.

The show ended on an absolute belter. Daniel Rubinstein pulled it out the bag with his musical routine. He completely nailed Britney Spears’ backing track and his impersonation of Jimmy Hendrix – kneeling on the floor, making wailing guitar sounds – was immense, and the highlight of the whole show. Although, the judges didn’t seem to think so, as they crowned Jenny Bolt as the competition’s 2020 winner.

Leicester Comedy Festival review: Jo Enright – Erdington Girl at Holy Trinity Church


Review by Kyran Kennedy

In another top-drawer performance, Jo Enright gave one of the most entertaining church sermons the Leicester public will have seen in years.

The Birmingham-born stand-up was back in Leicester almost 25 years after winning the Mercury Comedian of the Year award at the 1996 festival.

You might consider it an odd choice of venue for a comedy show, but it was the perfect choice of venue for Jo’s humour.

Her witty lines and tales about the people she grew up around and the odd sights she’s seen were all too relatable for the audience. She also had no qualms about poking fun at herself to earn a good laugh.

Turning a pun in to a story worth sharing is something that Jo exceeds at. She’s been to plenty of cities and towns across the UK and seems like she has a story for each of them, but if not she can always rely on her birthplace to provide an often outrageous story – though some of her jokes may put people off visiting places in Birmingham.

Read more: See our Leicester Comedy Festival reviews here.

People from all walks of life could certainly find fun in an act like this, but at another venue the material could easily suit a late-night audience with more adult tones included.

Also, it was a great solo show. Covering well over an hour and keeping the audience entertained can be tough, even for a group of comedians all performing on the same show.

But to keep the interest high until the end is something that Jo can be proud of and undoubtedly shows her range.

This act showed why Jo has been on the comedy circuit for more than two decades and can likely continue to get laughs up and down the country for years to come.

The former ‘The Job Lot’ star could certainly earn herself a few more TV roles if her performances match up to this week in week out.

Leicester Comedy Festival review: Chris Betts at Manhattan 34

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Leicester Comedy Festival review: CSI: Crime Scene Improvisation at the Y Theatre


The Chandeliers Crime Scene Improvisation

Review by Sofia Luis-Hobbs

A locksmith, murdered by a teddy bear… can it get more random than that?

When the audience set the occupation and method of death in this murder-mystery improv play, I was sure the show was going to flop. ‘There’s no way they can make this work,’ I thought to myself, but lo and behold – they did.

It all began with the Chandeliers – the company behind Crime Scene Improvisation – encouraging people to get involved, getting the crowd to shout out suggestions for the victim’s name, their profession and method of death.

Some random suggestions were made that’s for sure, like death by cabbage and for the victim to be working as a stripper. But we settled on a locksmith by the name of Sybil Sherlock who died at the paws of a teddy bear.

Yes, that’s right – a teddy bear.

I know what you’re thinking, ‘how on earth could anyone by murdered by a teddy bear?’ But the Chandeliers didn’t just make it work, they had the audience in hysterics at the sheer randomness that was unfolding before them.

Read more: See our Leicester Comedy Festival reviews here.

Of course it wouldn’t be an improv performance without there being a few forgotten details or lines that end unexpectedly, but this didn’t put a damper on the performance, it instead added to its comedic value as the group swiftly deal with these hiccups and keep the scenes moving despite any bumps along the journey.

The Chandeliers are no doubt masters in their field and come together like clockwork as a group to put on a wonderfully weird and unique performance every time.

A highlight of shows like this one is that every night is different, meaning you could watch them back to back and there would be a different murder mystery for them to solve each time – I’m sure some are weirder than the rest, but I have no doubt that each will be as beautifully executed as the last.