Lauren Pattison confirms new date for her show at Leicester Comedy Festival

By Beatriz Abreu Ferreira

Lauren Pattison has announced on Twitter she will be performing at next year’s Leicester Comedy Festival, which runs from February 3 to 21.

The comedian was in Leicester for the 2020 edition of the Comedy Festival and has now confirmed she will be returning in 2021 with her work-in-progress show Party of One.

“My first preview of what should have been my 2020 show was in Leicester and I thought ‘you know I think I’m onto something with this show.’ Anyway then a global pandemic happened so let’s start again in 2021 – same title, same venue, new show … hopefully, ”she wrote.

Lauren Pattison plays Peter Pizzeria on February 21. To find out more about the comedy festival visit: https://comedy-festival.co.uk/

Leicester Comedy Festival announces its return in 2021 with COVID-19 safety measures

By Adam Rear

The Big Difference Company, the charity in charge of producing the Leicester Comedy Festival, has announced that both Leicester Comedy Festival and The UK Kids’ Comedy Festival will be running in 2021.

Running from the February 3-21, the star-studded line-up for the 2021 festival includes big names such as Ed Byrne, Angela Barnes, Larry Dean, Stewart Lee, Zoe Lyons, Al Murray and Iain Stirling, as well as over a hundred more confirmed acts and many more to be announced in the future.

Al Murray: One of the headline acts for the upcoming 2021 Leicester Comedy Festival

Tickets will be available online and, in following with Government guidelines, the NHS Test and Trace system will be in use throughout the venues, as well as other safety measures.

Geoff Rowe, founder and Director of Leicester Comedy Festival & The UK Kids’ Comedy Festival, is hoping to shake away the winter blues in 2021.

“We are frankly delighted to be back in 2021 with our two festival programmes.  Since the end of our most successful festival to date back in February this year, the world has changed beyond all belief and there have been times when, like many people, we weren’t sure what the future would hold.”

A variety of additional safety measures will be put into place, including reduced capacities of shows, socially distanced seating and extra time between shows will be allocated for additional cleaning.

Big Difference is also excited to announce the return of an exciting fundraising event called the Stand-Up Challenge, which is due to take place in June 2021.

The headline name for the upcoming summer event is Jon Ashworth, Shadow Secretary of State for Health and Social Care and Member of Parliament for Leicester South.

“They laughed when I said I was going to do stand-up, well they ain’t laughing now,” he said.

“I can’t believe I’ve agreed to do stand-up. But it’s all for charity and sitting opposite Boris Johnson in the Commons has given me plenty of material.”

The Leicester Mercury Comedian of the Year Competition has been postponed until June 2021. Fans of the event fear not, a ‘Best of Leicester Mercury Comedian of the Year’ show will be held on Saturday, February 22, showcasing the return of previous festival comedians who either won or were nominated in previous years.

For more information about tickets, dates, acts, safety measures and more, head to www.comedy-festival.co.uk and www.ukkidscomedyfestival.co.uk.

Santander Bikes confirm Leicester as latest partner city

by Andre Sobol

Leicester is set to become the home of the largest e-bike scheme in the UK next spring following an agreement with cycle provider Ride On.

More than 500 electric bikes will be available to hire from 50 stations around the city, with work already underway to create these docking points.

Complications due to the ongoing pandemic have caused delays to the scheme, but the council hopes that the rising interest in active lifestyles will push residents to embrace cycling when it does launch. 

Image: Santander bikes in London, a preview of the type soon to come to Leicester. Credit gettyimages//Lionel Derimais

Titled Santander Cycles Leicester, the £600,000 project is a joint effort involving the Leicester City Council, Santander UK and Ride On.

Ride On is a Spanish company that has had great success with their bike sharing services in their native country and are now expanding into the UK following good results in Miami.

Santander Cycles Leicester will mainly focus on serving the city centre with some of the city’s main landmarks serving as Docking stations – including St Margaret’s Bus Station, Leicester Railway Station and De Montfort University’s Innovation Centre. 

Options to hire out bikes will range from day passes to membership plans, and the easy to use unlock system can be activated by smartphone or key cards found at kiosks.

Be Our Guest: Disney’s Beauty and the Beast musical coming to Leicester

by Andre Sobol

Photo credit: Evan Zimmerman for MurphyMade

One of the most beloved fairy tales of all time is set to enchant a new generation for the very first time. Disney has just announced that their Beauty and the Beast musical will begin its UK tour in Leicester next year.
 
Running in the Curve Theatre from the 25th May 2 until the 26th June 2021, the musical is a remake of the original that premiered in Broadway over 26 years ago. 
 
The original creative team returns to bring the love story to life with new spell binding visual effects. 
 
Nostalgic songs such as GastonEvermore and Tale as Old as Time will be backed by a stunning live orchestra, capturing the classic Disney magic.
 
After Leicester, the tour continues to Dublin (8-31 July), Bristol (12th Aug- 18th Sept), Liverpool (23 Sept-16 Oct) and finishes in Edinburgh (21 Oct-27 Nov).
 
Tickets for the Leicester show go on sale to the general public in December through the official website- https://www.beautyandthebeastmusical.co.uk.
 
Children under 3 will not be allowed in. Be advised the production contains fog effects, strobe lighting and video projection.