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Andy Parsons: I’ve Got A Shed – The Lowry, Salford

Writer: Andy Parsons

Reviewer: Laura Ord

[rating:3.5]

Andy ParsonsToo cheap to employ a warm up act, a backstage announcer or set designer, Parsons is back on his own with an enjoyable and quality two hour show of classic inoffensive comedy.

As a regular panalist on Mock The Week, Parsons is fast becoming a household name as one of the top professional comics in the UK. For those who enjoyed his previous tours about politics and topical news stories, ‘I’ve Got A Shed’ does not disappoint with much more of the same.

Parsons first half starts rather predictably by making small talk with the front row (finding the only bald bloke and saying their twins) and then moves through topics of bank call centre security and health checks at the doctors. His most risqué material relating to the excitement of a foot massage given by another man, which gets his rather reserved audience laughing out loud. These feel like staple jokes for a mainstream comic which you have probably heard before. But what you don’t get with the other comics is the Parsons delivery. The rhythm of his speech, the odd intonations and weird inflections make for auditory marmite. Its this that can get even the corniest and weakest of jokes home with a laugh.

The second half is more overtly political as Parsons discusses minimum wage, ‘Pleb-gate’ and Boris Johnson for President. He is so confident up on stage and delivers his opinions so well you’d be forgiven for believing them as fact. Yet he does it without being preachy. One of Parsons main comedic tools is to explain a joke right after saying it, milking his laughs further. This, to some is annoying, but to others is another reason why they love seeing him live.

Why he has called his tour ‘I’ve Got A Shed’ is a mystery. It certainly doesn’t appear to be of much relevance. In fact there doesn’t appear to be any particular theme resonating through the show, and the shed joke is the worst of the night. But he does manage to flow one joke through to the next and his big finale (cue party poppers and a unicycle) does link his main laughter lines together for the final climax.

Parsons does not break any boundaries when it comes to his material. His comedy is safe and middle of the road. For some this may seem a tad dull and lacking innovation, but most will say ”if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’. Parsons is slick and skilled in his craft. And this is exactly what his audience come to see.

Runs until: 4th May 2013

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