Comedy night swept away the winter blues

Comic: Kiri Pritchard-McLean
Comic: Kiri Pritchard-McLean
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Frog and Bucket

Preston Guild Hall

If there ever was a month when venue bosses would expect a quiet spell when it comes to shows, it would have to be during the month of January.

Skint after Christmas and not wanting to venture outside the cosiness of home when the weather is so cold and miserable, you would think a comedy night in January would be struggling to fill its seats.

I don’t know if it was because the Preston Frog and Bucket comedy night came at the end of the month when people had finally received their first pay packet of the year or just that word is spreading about what a great night it is, but the Guild Hall foyer was absolutely heaving.

When Preston Guild Hall bosses leapt to the rescue of the Frog and Bucket shows after their comedy club home in Preston closed, some people were dubious about whether the formula would work in the foyer of the Guild Hall.

However, since their launch in November in their new home, the Frog nights have been going from strength to strength and January was the busiest one yet.

Sticking to the cosy comedy club layout of tables surrounding the stage, the place was completely packed with a mixtures of groups and couples.

And the crowd certainly weren’t disappointed by the calibre of the comedians as all three acts served up plenty of laughs.

Andy Fury who looked a funny beardy chap, was superb as the compere with his self deprecating humour and his interaction with the crowd was spot on.

First was Alex Boardman who brimmed with confidence, energy and banter. His natural charm and sense of fun instantly won over the crowd as did his local references such as poking fun at Preston’s bus station.

Female comic Kiri Pritchard-McLean was next and was very likeable with her funny anecdotes and observational humour.

From talking about how her local takeaway who are used to seeing her turn up at funny hours after her comedy gigs thinking she must be a prostitute to her fact that pubic lice are now an endangered species in these days of waxing, to tales about her boyfriend who hails from Leyland, Kiri provided plenty of laughter.

Mike Wilkinson might have been last in the line-up, but he definitely wasn’t the least as his relaxed and confident stage presence combined with his engaging humour was an instant hit that had people doubled over in laughter – even before he properly started his set.

His teasing banter with a group of teachers sat near the front had them giggling away while entertaining everyone else.

Not only was the entertainment top notch, an added bonus was when huge platters containing food such as samosas, spring rolls, fish goujons and chicken skewers were placed on every table. Just a pity we’d already had our tea.

Having had a hugely enjoyable night, dare I say it, but these new monthly Frog and Bucket nights seem to be even better than they were at their former venue.

Roll on next month.

Aasma Day